Plan Backwards, Live Forwards

November 16, 2011

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18 Responses to Plan Backwards, Live Forwards

  1. Chris Wharton on November 16, 2011 at 7:41 pm

    This is an amazing way of giving a pep talk :D

  2. Stephanie L. on November 16, 2011 at 7:43 pm

    I have had to do this with my photography business. It’s honestly the only way I’ve managed to do everything I have so far. Well, that AND the grace of God. Only recently though did I really start dreaming big. I mean, why not, right? We are trying to apply this very concept you’re discussing (and brilliantly illustrating, by the way!) to Jesse and his webcomic and art in general. I can’t wait to read more!

  3. johnny on November 16, 2011 at 8:05 pm

    fantastic point and fantastic art to accompany it. love the pastel colors too. keep it up!

  4. Shaun McMillan on November 16, 2011 at 10:34 pm

    Me gusta

  5. Andrew McPherson on November 19, 2011 at 2:27 am

    I look forward to reading these bit by bit; keep it up!!

    • stephen on November 19, 2011 at 6:17 am

      Thank you! Welcome!

  6. Will Terrell on November 20, 2011 at 5:22 am


  7. Tyler on November 21, 2011 at 1:21 am

    For me the hardest part has to do with picking which goal to focus on in the first place.

    • stephen on November 21, 2011 at 4:47 pm

      Hey Tyler! Yeah, I understand.

      The great mistake I’d like to try and avoid while writing this series of articles is that I don’t want to imply that I’m outlining a path to happiness or something. I don’t want to make a “get a goal and follow these steps and you’ll be happy” thing, I want to make a, “if you have a goal, here’s a good way to pursue it kind of thing.”

      There’s no denying that a goal is a wonderful thing to have, but I personally believe there are more important things in life than goals– like seeking truth and being in community and loving people and loving God. So I would tell you be looking for goals, but don’t be pushed around by a pressure to choose.

  8. richard on December 3, 2011 at 5:01 am

    wow! thanks for the post:-)

    • stephen on December 3, 2011 at 4:09 pm

      Yup! Thanks for stopping by!

  9. Rynnie on December 7, 2011 at 5:44 pm

    I really like your posts :)

    Only that sometimes, planning on your own doesn’t bring you anywhere closer to your dreams; circumstances (i.e. parents, financial situation etc) might hinder the path.

    But overall, I guess one has to shut everything out and listen to God’s will..I’m glad you’re on your way to the goal :)

    • stephen on December 7, 2011 at 7:49 pm

      I agree– the next coming will be about planning for things you don’t have control over.

  10. KirinCartoon on February 29, 2012 at 3:43 pm

    Another message that screams “GET IT TOGETHER!” and “YOU CAN DO IT!” To myself and many others. Thanks for sharing your views&experiences with us! :D

  11. Adriana on November 13, 2013 at 9:05 pm

    I’m also doing a webcomic and i have a goal in mind, but when I reach this part of the question i stopped, how can you know how much can it cost and how much time will it take? for example i know you can have an idea o you just put a due time? the most difficult thing i have stepped on is following my own due dates, and it discorages me and i know it’s something up to me, that’s why i’m reading your comic je

    • stephen on November 15, 2013 at 4:00 pm

      Hey! Big deadlines are important to be aware of, but they are bad at motivating us, like you said. Perhaps try to break down the big deadline into smaller time chunks. See if you can get it down to like, fifteen to 25 minutes. Ask yourself, what can I accomplish is this chunk of time? And then go for it!

  12. Eric Tarkington on December 2, 2013 at 3:03 am

    It may not be important for the point you’re trying to make, but “reverse engineering” means breaking down an existing mechanism so that you can see how it was built and reproduce it. This is how to make a “knockoff” of something, and it was disrespected as stealing intellectual property. In software engineering, it has recently come to mean decomposing your own product in order to make it better. Is it stealing when you study how something was made to work, or is it learning?

    You seem to be talking about developing a plan by working backwards in time from an endpoint, with a focus on identifying the features of the end goal. This is a familiar strategy in plot development for writers.

    All of your small cause and effect sequences will run forward. Your complete plan may be clear to you in sequences near the end or near the beginning, or unclear in parts, because you are not familiar with some steps. Some sequences can run in parallel (cooking the rice while you are cooking the beans), and others must have one before the other (sand, then paint). Putting these sequences into a plan is good for motivation and timing your actions, even if you have to make many plan changes along the way.

  13. Prathyusha on April 5, 2016 at 10:57 am

    Awsome one! <3

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