- Posted by Cody Maltias
- On October 10, 2017
- 0 Comments
This concept is pretty simple but it has had a large impact in terms of how I look at and evaluate potential courses of action in pursuit of improvement in any domain. I’m constantly questioning how to get better in a variety of different realms and at the end of the day any potential intervention falls into three different categories.
There is an over abundance of advice and information in the world on almost any subject. Trying to make positive changes forces individuals to evaluate different courses of action and commit to a certain type of change in order to get different results. When considering any change in behavior any alteration will represent an Addition, Subtraction, or Refinement. By breaking down and categorizing this way I am able to better understand my current choices, and give myself a different lens through which to make decisions. This concept is best illustrated through practical advice.
Looking at diet is one area where people in all stages of life are trying to figure out an ideal. Additions to diet normally look like adding supplements or eating certain superfoods. Subtractions would be restriction on certain foods or limiting eating to certain times. Refinements would be changing the preparation or sourcing methods, for example trying to get all foods to be organic.
Viewing this concept through a smaller concept let’s look at improving wall takedowns. Once you know your current tactics and techniques you can add certain new options, subtract techniques that are not successful, and finally refining the list of techniques or tactics that you are utilizing.
The biggest consistent issues I see across all domains is the preference for addition or refinement at the exclusion of subtraction. By in large it is the foods you avoid, the techniques you exclude, the time you leave uninvested that will make the biggest difference. Everyone wants to add the secret technique or detail rather than wood shed on what they have. Everyone wants to know the supplement or magic pill that will give an 8 pack rather than make a list of all the foods they consume and simply not eating the ones that common sense mentions might be holding them back.
Bringing this back into practical advice. Take an area of your life you want to improve. Grab a piece of paper. First write down everything you are currently doing. Write down some potential areas of refinement, and potential additions. First subtract, get rid of the items that are the furthest upstream and will bring the biggest benefit. That may be enough in and of itself, but if not look where you can make prudent additions or refinements. As always find the peers, coaches, and mentors that can aid in honest evaluation and give advice you trust. Go forth and conquer.