A framework helps you find the right directions to your life

I have recently been more and more convinced about the power of frameworks in living our lives.

In all aspects of our lives, we are bombarded both with more information than we know what to do with, and less information than is needed to make an informed choice. We are presented with more choices than we can handle, each of them leading to a large number of equally tempting but non-convergent lives. And even the most mundane of situations are actually filled with incredibly complex and unique choices. (How was your first time at a Starbucks?)

And in all these cacophony of choices, we spend a inordinately disproportionate amount of time trying to navigate the nadirs and zeniths life throws at us.

And even worse, we are so emotionally invested in each decision, it makes picking one option and leaving behind the rest a really intense experience.

The reason I am beginning to see the power of frameworks is that it removes the emotions from the equation. They do not even pretend to contain the answers, but give you an objective list of questions to ask and steps to follow. Applying the process results in you eliminating, systematically, from the options available to you, until you have arrived at the best possible result for your options, your values, your life. The same framework might give you one answer, and your friend a different one.

So starting from now, I will be using these extensively, and rigorously, and over as much of my life as possible.

I am going to be documenting some of the ones that I have developed, along with some that my friends have taught me. These might be works in progress, as I keep adding to them based on the results of each application.

  1. Reduce Your Cognitive Load meta framework
    • Minimize distractions. Shut off Whatsapp, Facebook notifications, Twitter mentions. In fact, keep your phone on Airplane mode if need be.
    • Don’t trust your memory to paint you an accurate picture of what happened. Your brain is fallible. In fact, it is most definitely failing every single day to remember important facts that influence your decisions. Write down important stuff as it happens, so that later you are working from facts and not figments of your imagination.
    • Create frameworks for any decisions that you have to make more than once over your life.
  2. Just In Time decision making framework
    • In any decision tree your life needs to follow, do not follow through different branches unless you really have to. Until you absolutely need to make the decision, you will always have incomplete information. When you absolutely must take the decision, you will have the best possible information that you could ever have.
    • Just perform the all the next steps that you can, until you hit that decision node.
  3. Is This Girl Worth Pursuing framework
    • Figure out what are the qualities that you want in your girl, and what is the minimum level in each parameter that you would tolerate. Make sure these minimums are an accurate reflection of you. E.g. maybe looks are important to you, and your minimum is an 8. Or maybe it is just not important, and your tolerable level is 3.
    • Also have a minimum overall score.
    • If you have any doubts about the score on the first date, go for a second one. Usually, just one date is good enough for this.
    • E.g. my framework for this is
      • Sense of humour / fun  – 7 (we should laugh at similar things)
      • Looks – 5
      • Geographical distance – 7 (we should be in the same city)
      • Emotional drama / baggage – 4 (occasional, real drama is acceptable. Drama queens are not)
      • Maturity – 7
      • Sense of adventure – 7 (doesn’t have to be a professional sky diver, but open to the odd adrenaline rush)
      • Open mindedness – 7 (she should be open to trying new things in various aspects of her life)
      • Strong sense of self – 8 (able to make her own decisions based on her own values and priorities)
      • Comfort level – 9
      • Intelligence – 7
      • Simplicity – 7
      • Honesty – 9
      • Should want a healthy family life, along with a career – 8
  4. Start Keep Stop feedback framework
    • What is one thing X should START doing?
    • What is one thing X should KEEP doing?
    • What is one thing X should STOP doing?
    • X could be you yourself, or someone whom you are giving feedback to.
    • Proactively ensure this feedback is happening once a month.

I will be adding more frameworks to the list later, but for now these are extensive enough. For now, I am going to apply them rigorously. And that’s the tough part!

Do you have any frameworks you use in your life? Let me know about them!