My perspective on how I balance the short and long term is rapidly changing.
I have always been a long game player, as I believe that success largely comes from consistency over an extremely lengthy period of time.
But...in thinking more and more about my future, I realized that the long view is far out of reach. If I wanted to "change my life," I also needed to focus on the micro, the short term, the today and tomorrow.
So I actually stopped focusing on the long view whatsoever, and rather, tried to optimize for the next few weeks, days, and hours. I realized that the world was moving so quickly, with so many new opportunities and exciting things to do and try out, that future planning too much would end up being a restrictor.
But then...I started thinking about how to best "optimize" for the short term if I do not know where I am optimizing for (aka the long term). I also think I underestimated the time horizon of the long view.
So here is my new working thesis.
It is that I have assumptions about where I want to be in 20 years. What type of person I want to be, but more importantly, how I want to feel. What types of people I want to be around. etc.
Very non-prescriptive things. These are not "jobs" I want to be doing, because I know, 20 years from now, the job environment will be tangibly different and new things will come and go.
With these abstract north stars in mind, I think build a set of experiments to test my assumptions. That is the short term.
And when I say short term, I mean weeks, literally days. I try not to plan anything that I do for more than a few weeks out.
It is this balance that allows me to not only be productive in the short term, but also take the long view.