One Simple Model To Help You Measure Your Growth

Measuring your Growth

There is one thing people are always missing when they start engineering their life. This thing is a good metric system. How do you measure and estimate your progress? What values do you need to optimize when you are making decisions?

For this exact case we suggest using TEMS model.

TEMS is an abbreviation for a group of resources:

  • Time
  • Energy
  • Money
  • Social Connectedness

Time as a resource

Time is the most precious resource in your life, just because you cannot get more personal time. You can, though, exchange other resources for other people's time.

Your personal time has very peculiar properties:

  • It feels like there is never enough time
  • Time resource is depleting naturally
  • Sense of time is very unique between different people and cultures
  • Time and attention are two things your closest people will always value more than anything else.

Energy as a resource

Energy characterises your will-power, internal motivation, attention, ability to focus and general well-being. Also, you can think of Energy as a measure for health and stress recovery capacity.

Energy and Time comprises your basic resources for personal efficiency. Throughout your life you will convert your Energy and Time into other things and experiences. Energy and Time defines how many interests you can pursue and how many joys you can get from life.

Money as a resource

Money is the easiest to measure and easiest to convert resource. Money has a direct physical representation - you can see it and touch it.

This is why money is often used as a substitute measure to all other things: happiness (rich == happy), influence (rich == influential), well-being (rich == has more free time).

This is a very misleading frame of reference, though. Money can not buy all of those things.

Social Connectedness

Social Connectedness is the most underestimated and valuable resource. As human beings, we are born social. Our happiness depends on socialising and feeling love and acceptance.

Your Social Connectedness comprises of two main categories: friends & relatives and people you can benefit from (colleagues, employees, professional contacts). Both categories require your attention and time so that you can benefit from them.

A secret of Success

All four resources are convertible: you can convert, for example, Time and Energy into Money and Social Connectedness.

If you are using TEMS model, then success will look like balancing and increasing all resources at once, as opposed to exchanging one resource for another.
Increasing your resources at the same time
Here is an example
Imagine, you've got a great opportunity to work in an industry-leading startup. You know that they are eager to give a good value of options and their exit is kinda obvious for you.

The problem is that they will demand overtimes and a lot of mental activity from you - pushing the boundaries and learning cutting-edge stuff.

You tried to estimate the TEMS balance:

- Your free Time will decrease due to overtimes
- Your Energy level will decrease due to overtimes and focusing on shipping fast
- Your Money will increase, as the company is going to pay you more and you are sure you can exercise your options at the end.
- Your Social Connectedness will increase a little, as you will meet new people and will work closely with them day to day.

You can totally see that this opportunity will give you a lot of Money in 5 years, but will deplete your Time and Energy. Hopefully, you will be able to retain your Social Connectedness (meeting friends and relatives, keeping in touch with colleagues and industry pros).

Here are the questions we have for you:

1. Would you take this opportunity?
2. Would you take an opportunity to join a company where you will get less Money, but more free Time and freedom to meet people and network?
3. How does your latest job-related or home-related decisions map to this model?
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