Skip to content
Canajun Finances Home » “Don’t Mistake Activity for Achievement”

“Don’t Mistake Activity for Achievement”

Don’t mistake activity for achievement from John Wooden is something I remind my coworkers about often, and it is something to keep in mind when doing financial planning. John Wooden was the dean of College Basketball coaches in the U.S., but his simple theories on life live on in so many ways.

Simply monitoring your spending and religiously using Quicken does not mean you are Achieving anything (other than time spent looking at numbers). Grouping a set of similar activities is still does not ensure any achievement in that area.

If you:

  • Download all financial transactions into Quicken
  • Keep all of your receipts
  • Make sure you know the value of all of your assets (stocks and such)
activity for achievement
The True Wizard of Westwood

All you are achieving is information collection. You must act on this information or plan how you react to the data to impact things. Mindlessly doing busy work may seem satisfying, but if you have nothing gained from it, why did you do it in the first place? Having a plan or at least spending thresholds that you can act upon will make this data collection step towards a worthwhile goal, but you must do more than collect data. It would help if you analyzed it as well.

A great example of this was pointed out by a coworker, who mentioned that a “guess how many rice kernels are in a jar” contest had been won by someone, who had guessed 5000, and the actual grain of rice count was 5018. So someone during work counted all 5018 rice kernels? Was that a good use of a worker’s time? In terms of the contest, I guess not in terms of them doing this during work hours.

If you are unsure why you are doing something menial everyday task, ask yourself, what am I achieving doing this?

Collect data. However, use tools to analyze it and then act upon the new information you have learned, and you will be achieving more than simple data collection.

If you wish to read more about the Coach

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Verified by MonsterInsights