Many of us have an overwhelming amount of metrics in our lives. Here are just some of the metrics that I check on a regular basis:
- Facebook likes and mentions
- Daily Twitter likes, retweets, and mentions for five Twitter accounts
- Twitter Analytics for the past 30 days for my main Twitter account
- Instagram likes, comments, and mentions
- Podcast downloads (for three shows)
- Daily step count on my Fitbit
- Ounces of water I drink daily
- New subscribers to my email list
- New readers on Medium
- Views, reads, and recommends on Medium posts
- LinkedIn likes, comments, and connection invites
- Book sales
- Website visits for my various personal websites
- Google Analytics for my day job website
I’m sure there are more — these are just the ones off the top of my head.
Metrics are so attractive. They tell us how popular we are, how liked we are, what’s working for our audiences, what we should produce more of.
Except — they actually don’t.
Metrics don’t really tell us any of those things.
That’s why metrics are dangerous. The more we check them, the harder it is to think outside of the metrics box.
To be creative.
To be ourselves.
I recently published a podcast episode where I talked about the need to like our work no matter what other people say. I’d rather love something I make, truly enjoy the process of creating it, and have no one see it than hate something I make, have everyone love it, and become known for that thing.
Sure, metrics are good for some things. They are perfect for growth hacking, if that’s your thing.
But what if you just want to create things and not worry about what other people think?
Is that even possible anymore?
I hope so.
To think on:
- What metrics are you checking regularly? What metrics can you ignore?
- How do you challenge yourself to create without the constraint of outside opinion?