The MoSCoW Method.

Though ten years retired, memories of my past working life surface now and again. The MoSCoW method came to my attention in a Management in Education course I did with Trinity College. It was a method of sorting priorities – Must do, Should do, Could do and Won’t do! Pffffffffff, what a load of claptrap!

There was a similar “Should do – Could do” that I recall from another similar course – in-service education was the latest new big thing at the time – and this one was on personal development and included in-depth considerations of personality types. The Myers-Briggs test held great sway at the time!

Some personality types, and I slotted into this category, were very inclined to approach much in life with a “should do” attitude, living life with a sense of duty, a sense of being obliged to do this or that. Too much of such an attitude can, of course, lead to an unwelcome level of tension and anxiety in life and the advice was to adapt a “could do” attitude instead, to realise there generally is a choice and that we may exercise that choice without feelings of remorse of guilt. Despite realising all of this I generally still feel this sense of being obliged to do things, to finish what I have started etc etc – too long a list of foibles to mention.

One example, presently relevant, is the compulsion I feel to finish a jig-saw. The title of the current jig-saw is “The Tulip Fields”, a pastime during these days of viral isolation. I progressed along my usual lines – assembling the frame of the picture and then infilling with the features. In this case it was a windmill, some houses and fields of red and yellow tulips. Left to last was the vast sky, an almost cloud-filled blue sky. It would be a long and tedious, trial and error, assembly but, for once I applied the “could do” principle and decided that life was too short to spend time on a vast uninteresting jig-saw sky. The purpose of doing the jig-saw was enjoyment and this did not promise enjoyment. To hell with it!


Today’s jig-saw is one of Hampton Court Palace which has quite little sky.


2 thoughts on “The MoSCoW Method.

  1. Bravo!! I am in Virginia, United States, but I read your blogs frequently. They are a comfort, and I find that we often think along the same lines. I’m saying “To hell with it,”‘about a lot of things lately. If it doesn’t bring me some joy or satisfaction, then I’m over it. Keep writing! And thanks.

    Liked by 1 person

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