Sheepdog: Framework for Action in Life and Work
You have a right to perform your prescribed duties, but you are not entitled to the fruits of your actions. Never consider yourself to be the cause of the results of your activities, nor be attached to inaction. -Bhagavad Gita 2.47
 

Why?

  • Every person is responsible for themselves, their family and to the outcome of a bigger purpose which is their work.
  • To be effective at our work and to work on things that we care about we need to understand ourselves and create a framework that will lead to us making those decisions that get us to the destination we want to go.
  • The decisions we make and why and how we make them can have a specific outcome in the way that we move forward to what we want to do.
  • However, we are not taught how to control or take control of our lives in any effective way.
  • schools reach the what and how but never the whys of our lives.
  • We sort of prod along and move with the flow.
  • We react to what others tell us to do, make our decisions based on the inputs of other people, and never seem to really control our own lives.
  • We are told to get our shit together, to get off our ass, and go do something.
  • But how do we even do that?
  • what does it mean to take good action?
  • The problem with the modern world is that we are all told the How and What that we need to do but we never figure out the Why for ourselves.
  • Most of us never stop to ask this Why and go through life never questioning this state of affairs.
  • Millennials have gone through life being told we can do whatever we want to do, but after a while of doing the grind that what starts to be less and less concrete causing us to go into a turmoil.
  • We seek promotions but a lot of time we move laterally, do it well, and then get to the cycle of meaninglessness again.
  • We start getting an innate emptiness, this Sisyphean effort starts making our lives less and less meaningful.
  • We try to find meaning somehow: alcohol, drugs, buying random things, social media, etc. that attempts to numb our sense of emptiness. 
  • I found this burnout seep in to my life.
  • There are so many books on unleashing yourselves that all seem to be great to pump you up but then fall short on how to, you know, you actually go about doing the thing you want to do.
  • Books like 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, Getting Things Done, anything by Tony Robbins, etc. all pump you up and give you different general techniques of organization, or tools for decision making but nothing concrete that can be used to move forward. Other books like 4 Hour Work Week, 80/20 Rule, $100 Dollar Startup all give different pieces of the puzzle but don’t give an overarching framework.
  • This book is a culmination of lessons learned from reading all the books and with modern tools like AI, Automation and the Gig Economy available I wanted to build a tool to help make building things simple.
  • The framework defined is made for action and moving forward to achieve the things that you want to achieve .
  • This book gives a framework for how to build a life made for action.
  • The why of your existence is up to you, but the what and how can be done.
  • People say you should find your passions do the work. This is backwards you have to do work and do different things to find the why. If you specialize too early you don’t get to experience the different paths and your why may not be really a good why.
  • This book’s framework will give you a way to aim your life in one direction, remove your focus from all the things that distract you from that direction, and hopefully get you there.

Who is this book for?

 
  • This book is written for the person who had dreams as a kid, dreams of doing big things, dreams that were crushed with life’s burdens.
  • However, most great things in life are the accumulation of many small steps taken together to build a bigger whole.
  • My goal is to show that there is a set of many small steps that you can take to build something bigger.
  • With modern psychology, management, and organizational engineering we can more effectively build our own life as a machine.
  • Then you can optimize your machine for velocity, i.e how fast you get things done.
  • This books is also divided into two sections Life and Organization because those are the two that I feel are most important to all of us living.
  • This is for the person who is interested in self-evolution, who wants to lead a team that can accomplish amazing goals.
 
 

What is the principle of the book?

  • The principles of this book are toward Action as the main and all encompassing goal of everything you do.
  • The goal is how do you take action and move forward in a inherently changing world where you have a lot of unknowns?
  • How do you effectively make the decisions that you need quickly?
  • How do you learn what you need to learn and move that learning into action?
  • How to make sure that you and your team are taking the correct action?
  • How do you use power and influence to get what you want?
  • How do you ensure that you are working on the correct thing?
  • A lot of these principles are not new but applied as a singular framework.
  • I have pull ideas from Lean Manufacturing, Scrum, OODA Loop, 80/20 Principle, Systems Thinking, Behavioral Economics, and Psychology to build the principles in this book.
  • Furthermore, this book will be evolving as I learn more effective tools to get and organize life to be more effective.
 

Warning

 
  • This book promises you the ability to act but to do that effectively that you have to be able to give up certain things.
  • You can’t have everything without giving up something.
  • Nothing in life is free. Nothing!
  • To go where you want to be you have to be able to change your behavior and habits.
  • So before embarking on this journey of action note that you want to embark on it in the first place.
  • and I won’t beat around the bush, others may beat you to a pulp but your mind can destroy you.
 

 

Notes

 
  • We may be good workers in the field of choice we choose to be in but we struggle with helping or affecting the bigger picture.
  • At some point you realize that you want something more and you don’t have the tools to do it.
  • The destination is never as fun as the journey.
  • Once we arrive our brains lose interest and we are back to our baseline happiness.
  • So it is better to constantly evolve, as that is the only thing that is worth anything.
  • A person who has stopped evolving is already dead, they just don’t know it yet.
  • What they are now would be no different from what they are the moment they die.
  • I thought that there were certain things I would always be interested in and though that is true to a certain extent I already realized that I needed a general framework for things I don’t know I will be interested in, things I want to like but have no idea how.
  • After reading a bunch over what other people have tried to achieve, what their goals were and how they did it, it seems all people go through a certain trajectory.
  • Learn and Do
  • We learn something and do it, that is what school teaches us.
  • However, what most of us don’t do is advance. When we “Do” we get stuck or move laterally. While this is all good and well, it is easy to get bored and disoriented when all we are doing is moving laterally through life.
  • So we need a new framework for learning.
  • Learn, Do, Advance, Iterate
  • Learn
  • We want to get a new job, want to learn a new skillset, want to move our life and relationships in a new directions. First we need to learn and understand what it is that we are even asking and get an understanding.
  • Do
  • We then need to make small adjustments to test out our hypothesis and iterate until we feel comfortable with this new learning, but with an end date in mind. We can’t be stuck in the same tasks forever.
  • Advance
  • We then need to commit and advance our position, this means going from that which is comfortable to that which is uncomfortable. This may mean taking a job that has more responsibility, starting a company, adjusting or leaving relationships with people who are holding you back, and forcing new outcomes.
  • Iterate
  • When you commit and advance you have a whole new set of mistakes, and outcomes that you have to learn from. This should set a trigger of a new tree to learning.
  • What is interesting about this framework is that it works for both individuals and teams.
  • It depends on how you handle the learning.
  • When starting something ask what other thing it will take away from

 

  • Work
An organization whether a business, government office, non-profit, etc. all are bodies of people the goal is to have them all work as a team aiming at the same goal. Usually, most organizations don’t have a clear goal in mind and the team is now working in the same positive direction but the efforts are diffused leading to waste and work not getting done that needs to get done.
 
An organization then is attempting to go towards a certain goal, focusing the energies of the people that work there, and doing it with minimal waste. However, like a person an organization needs to know its basic “Why?” and lead by goals.