As they say in broadcasting: “I interrupt the usual programming with a special announcement”. My blog posts are usually measured, and written over a few days, and published intermittently. But tonight I’m inspired to try something new. Let’s call it a blogathon, shall we?
Starting right now,this very minute, I’ll be writing a post every day for exactly 7 days. I’ll be writing about my latest Personal Kanban experiment, the Mommy Dojo Kanban. These posts will be short, to the point, and very much focused on rapidly embedding the new behaviour I want to instill and rapidly adjusting any aspects of the new mechanism that are not working. My prose might therefore not be as flowing as it usually is. Expect lots of bullets, and short and sharp sentences! 😉
Expressed in Agile terminology: I plan to have a sprint length of 1 day. These blog posts will fulfill the role of sprint planning, review and retrospective, all rolled into one. So let’s get right to it!
What is my goal?
- I intend to grade for my brown belt (Shotokan karate) in October.
- To achieve that, I need to attend karate class consistently (no skipping!) and put in extra training time inbetween classes.
- I also need to lift my general strength and fitness by a couple of notches to have the stamina for what will be a very tough grading exam.
What did I plan to do on Day 1? (Sprint 1)
- I set out to build a simple two-column kanban, using magnetized cards for each of the key elements of the training programme I have to maintain from now until October. This took me all of 15 minutes to do. CHECK.
- I wanted the design to be flexible. There is no explicit order in which these elements have to be done, as long as I do all of them every week, except for the Extra? card, which is a “stretch” training session that I can use for extra karate or fitness work, depending on what I need in any given week – or leave out, if I feel I’ve done enough already. CHECK.
What worked on Day 1?
- I got up and went to the gym!
- I knocked off two cards: Gym x 1 + Upper Body
What did not work on Day 1?
- I left to go to the gym too late!
- As a result, I could not start or finish the Karate 1 Hour card, as I had planned.
What am I changing and why?
- Definitely I’m splitting the Karate 1 Hour card into two separate 30 minute cards. This way, I can still achieve something, even if I don’t have a full hour. Why? I’m nervous that, if I leave it like this, I’ll keep putting it off until I have that rare “single perfect hour” and then run out of time this week.
- Maybe I think I also need to add another actual class to my schedule, preferably training with more senior belts. Why? Training against stronger karateka will help me up my game quite quickly. (It might also kill me). But … I don’t want to be too hasty. I’ll think about this change for now, and see whether I manage to fit the rest of the training into one week or not, before I add more training.
That’s it for tonight, folks. Tomorrow I reflect on Day 2.
I would be very happy to hear from any blog followers of Personal Kanban practitioners as I go. Suggestions and questions are very welcome.