30. June, 2005 - Using my Pessimizer

San Francisco
San Francisco
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First off, the last of the photos from San Francisco. A pretty standard skyline shot as we were about to pull back into the pier at the end of the cruise. I’m decidedly unsure about the way I placed the pyramid dead-center in the photo, and would probably try to frame this differently if I had a chance to do it again, but I’m not sure what I would change, exactly.

Yesterday was pretty darned productive, I think. Not everything on my to-do list got done, but I didn’t expect to finish everything up, and I got through most of the things I was worried about. Today I’ve got a similar amount of catching up to do, but it looks as though it’s reasonable and the items remaining on the list are mostly ones that won’t end up spinning out of control and turning into a multi-day ordeal.

Part of the improvement is that I tackled the tough things yesterday, but another part is that over the past year, since I started using Life Balance, I’ve gotten better at breaking large taskes up into smaller ones. Some mornings, the list looks huge, but that’s only because I’ve broken everything up into tasks that are an hour or less in duration, and it really helps me get a lot done when I need to. I still sometimes get sucked into exploding tasks, but now it’s usually because I have to deal with someone else who complicates things.

An example? Every time I have to deal with a “customer service” organization, I used to figure that was just a few minutes. Now I budget a full hour, figuring I’m going to be stuck on hold for a long time, and need to take the remainder of the hour to get my blood-pressure back down to normal afterwards. It doesn’t always take that long, but when things go well, I’m treating it as a pleasant surprise, rather than being grumpy when a five-minute task took an hour. Tuning my built-in pessimizer for the worst case seems to work well.

Copyright 2009, Dave Polaschek. Last updated on Mon, 15 Feb 2010 13:59:07.