I measured my weight loss progress based on lost pounds.
I measured my financial success based on my income.
I measured my career success based on the number of interviews and job offers I get.
I measured my social media success based on the number of followers.
I measured the health of my relationships based on the time I spend with my friends and family.
And they all have ONE thing in common:
They are measuring the WRONG metric.
Measuring the wrong metrics is dangerous, It leads to taking wrong actions to improve those wrong metrics, It will lead you to a wild chase with no end, It will get you stuck in an endless loop, and the worse of them all, It leads to you giving up on yourself.
Wrong metrics are dangerous, they reinforce that voice within ourselves that whispers You’re not good enough, and you never will be.
I know nothing more dangerous than giving up on yourself.
The thing with metrics, right or wrong ones, is that we blindly believe in them, and we rarely question their authenticity.
When was the last time you fact-checked your metrics?
We believe that they are right, and we believe that an increase or decrease in these metrics shows exactly how we are performing.
I should have measured my body fat percentage instead of lost pounds.
I should have measured my financial success by the ratio of my expense to my income, or by my total net worth, or by measuring the ratio of my liabilities to my assets, or my be all of them, not by a single meaningless number.
I should have measured my career success based on how many of the job offers I get are aligned with my values and beliefs instead of a mere number of how many job offers I get.
I should have measured my social media success by the ratio of comments, likes and most importantly, by the number of private messages I receive that thank me and tell me how I changed their lives rather than my number of followers.
Would I consider myself successful if I had 10 million followers with no Thank you DMs instead of having 10 thousand followers who have sent me 2 thousand Thank you DMs?
I choose the latter, I want to be the latter, I LOVE the latter.
I should have measured the health of my relationships based on the joy I feel from the pleasant memories instead of how many hours or days I spent with my family and friends. Quantifying such a thing is just plain stupid.
Here are 3 questions to I’m going to ask myself:
1- Did I Choose this Metric Myself Or Am I Just a Blind Follower of a Herd?
We’re living in a world where Herd Mentality rules.
Herd mentality, mob mentality and pack mentality, also lesser known as gang mentality, describes how people can be influenced by their peers to adopt certain behaviors on a largely emotional, rather than rational, basis.Herd MentalityWikipedia
We tend to follow based on our emotions. Most of the time we’re not intentional & deliberate when selecting our metrics. We inhertif many of our beliefs through the environment, from social media to social norms to our parents.
I often ask myself, did I really choose to measure this specific metric, say income as an indicator of financial success, or formal education and degree as an indicator of possible future opportunities, or did I simply inherit it from outside?
2- Does this metric depends on external factors?
If possible, I rather choose to track metrics that are not dependent on external factors.
How is it going to be a good indicator of progress when I have no influence or control over it?
3a- What Else Would I Track If I Couldn’t Track This One?
Another variation of this question would be
3b- What Are Opposing People Suggest To Track Instead?
This question helps me see the alternatives outside the box.
If I couldn’t track this metric what else could I track instead?