Here’s the deal. I’m overwhelmed with stuff. Part of me wants to just charge in: the sooner I get started on the mountain of tasks that I (always) have in front of me, the better.
…But the problem isn’t that I have “a mountain of tasks,” it’s that I think of them as a literal mountain of physical objects–rocks, dirt, something–that have to be dealt with as if they have literal, solid existence. The big rocks, little rocks metaphor is the least efficient way to deal with a mountain of tasks–not least of which because it leaves out the amount of work it takes to a) sort out the rocks, and b) put them in the damn container. To be able to schedule a day, a real day, the way that’s suggested by that model would take more than the amount of time during a real day–even if you only schedule two or three things and “let the rest fall into place.”
Because that’s not how it works. Things don’t fall into place. You get done with one project, look around, and have to change gears. And deal with anything new that comes up. And adapt to changes. And reprioritize based on information you didn’t have earlier, including your own personal exhaustion level.
The mountain of tasks are not literal rocks. The most efficient way to get rid of them is to decide not to do them.
And that takes thought. Which is why rushing in and working my hardest never does any long-term good.
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