Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Today’s Question: Who am I Not?

I’ve worked with a lot of people in various stages of life. One of the techniques that I’ve seen help some people figure out what direction to go in is to first eliminate the options they don’t like. Horribly paraphrasing Sherlock Holmes, once you have eliminated the unwanted, whatever remains, no matter how improbable, is the direction you should take.

I know I’m easily distracted from the boring task at hand by the promise of a hilarious tweet or another news story or yummm chocolate. The Buddhists call this state of mind “Monkey Mind” meaning unsettled; restless; capricious; whimsical; fanciful; inconstant; confused; indecisive; uncontrollable". Ok. Um, this is not who I want to be.

So, taking Sherlock Holmes advice, who do I want to be? I want to be consistent and responsible. I want my decisions to be reasoned and thought out and made in a timely manner. I want to be dependable and clearheaded. Those of you who know me in real life may say “But this is who you are” If so, Hooray! But I do want to mention how much effort it takes me to be like this.

  • I write everything down or text/email it to myself. Very simply, if it isn’t recorded, I don’t consider it “known”
  • I schedule everything. If you look at my calendar, you’ll see a lot of 1 minute appointments for random things.
  • My “appointments” have multiple reminders
  • I work with my strengths – For example, I know that I like being around people. Rather than try to do things that I’m bad at by myself, I schedule them with people, or in conjunction with things I like to do.
  • I realize that some things are going to take me a lot more time to do and I’ve learned to accept that.
  • I apologize a lot. Unfortunately, even with all the tips and tricks I use, I still say things in the heat of the moment that I probably shouldn’t say, forget things I’ve promised to do, and miss events. Still, a humble heart is supposed to be good for you, and I figure all of the oops’es have definitely made me more humble.

This article is what inspired today's blog post, even though I didn't really stay on topic. Still, it’s worth a read because basically this is what I try to do – outsmart my baser self by setting up “tricks” that keep me productive.

“Capable psychonauts who think about thinking, about states of mind, about set and setting, can get things done not because they have more will power, more drive, but because they know productivity is a game of cat and mouse versus a childish primal human predilection for pleasure and novelty which can never be excised from the soul. Your effort is better spent outsmarting yourself than making empty promises through plugging dates into a calendar or setting deadlines for push ups.” Thanks David McRaney for the quote that I've been thinking about all day.

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful. You, of course, use a classical quote to depict what a blogger friend and I refer to as "Squirrel!" moments. We are Mommy Bloggers, after all and our brains are full of Disney.