Gamifying Life3 min read

Happy new year. May 2016 be a blessed year for all of you.

While we are at New Year Resolutions, here’s a little formula for success that can perhaps get you a little bit more traction.

Pick any one particular aspect/domain of your life and ask yourself the following questions:

  • What does success in this domain look like and feel like? What are the processes that I can put in place to get me to/maintain that level of success? (If you do not know what processes are important, seek mentors and model after success. Mentors can be actual people you know or they can be books, videos, etc.)

    Think Bigger.

  • “What’s the one thing I can do, such that by doing it, everything else will be easier or unnecessary?” Pick that one thing to focus on first.
  • What parts of this process are within my control? Which part of it isn’t? Focus on those factors within your control.
  • For the parts of the process that are within your control, set yourself a goal using one of the following templates:
    • Quantity of something per unit time/duration
    • When I notice myself… , I will do…

“The secret to getting ahead is getting started.” – Mark Twain


  • Be honest with yourself, what is your current status when it comes to this goal?
  • Can you do a little bit better tomorrow? How do you intend to reward yourself when you meet your goal? Set up rewards that are alluring to you.
  • What would be a satisfactory level of performance that you can move onto a more difficult goal or the next goal?
  • Now that you have accomplished your process-oriented goal, do you feel closer to your vision of success?

A simple example:

  1. Success in studying economics means that I get an A for my A Levels. To get A for economics, there are many processes I can put in place, such as studying everyday after school, doing essay practice questions, or reviewing my past work.
  2. The one thing that I can do that will make everything else easier and/or unnecessary is to go through the prelim booklets and do outlines for all the questions in the booklet and then do self-assessment.
  3. I can control how much time I spend on each question. I cannot necessarily control the quality of my responses although that will certainly improve over time. I can control the framework that I use to attempt each question. I can control the amount of effort and focus I put into each question.
  4. I will spend 30 minutes to attempt 2 questions each day using the 5 Minute Quick-Write framework and then spend 10 minutes to do self assessment.
  5. Currently I am not spending any time doing this.
  6. If I manage to do this for 3 days in a row, I will reward myself with an episode of my favourite television series South Park.
  7. Once I complete half of the prelim booklet I can consider modifying the goal or reassessing whether the one thing that I can do has changed.
  8. (to be updated)
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