Today's entry will be simple and short, but don't be fooled. Think about this one for a moment.
I have a list of things that need to be done. Some are very important and will make a huge difference in my life. Others are not so important, though I intend to them anyway.
But for some reason, certain things on the list keep coming back to mind, even if it doesn't seem appropriate or urgent or like the most important thing.
My new way? I'm just going to do those things. If the idea keeps coming back to me and won't wait, I'm going to just do it, even if it's not optimal. And that way, I don't have to think about it any more.
Do you have anything like this?
I've added the title of this to my fortune file. I display inspiring sayings on my desktop with conky.
Yes! Sometimes a thought will just keep appearing, like a road block. I have to get it out of the way to move on to better things, even though the task is usually relatively unimportant. I try to get it out of the way by keeping a list of things to do. I find that writing it down clears my head. Possibly the reason I keep repeating that thought is because I am afraid to forget it?
Two weeks ago, I wrote "Damn Inbox - I'm Not Doing Anything Until It's Empty" - and then I cleared it out.
Now the sucker is back up to 45 messages. How'd that happen?
I think here's what happened -
1. My email volume has been going up, and I haven't adjusted to a new routine for it. Before I'd go into my inbox, clear a third of it when I had free time waiting for something, and then do that twice more in the day, and it'd be empty at the end of the day. Now, I'm going to need to set aside more time for it.
2. I'm answering/replying/writing a lot more emails, so it feels like it should be empty - but then I'm leaving one or two messages there that weren't there at the end of the day. This is like spending more money than you've got coming in - it's going to catch up with you sooner or later.
I've noticed that a lot of times when I do something and I wonder for a moment if it was the best choice or not, I tend to come to the conclusion that I don't regret it, so it must be good. For example, I was debating whether a week or so of sharply diminished productivity was an acceptable cost to go hike around the mountains in Peru.
My first instinct, with the Peru situation, amongst aothers, is to say, "Well, I had an awesome time, learned some good stuff, and had a great experience, so it was the right decision." But does that actually really mean that it was a good decision?
I'm really happy with my life and what I'm doing, so therefore I don't regret any decision I've made. The implication is that even though I didn't make every decision absolutely correctly, everything worked out for the best. To support this idea, I can think of one cool thing that happened, or one really great person I met, and work backwards through the improbable series of choices I made that led me there.
The more I think about it, the less stock I put into these sorts of thought patterns. Rather than reflecting the objective reality of decisions, I think that they reflect my optimistic nature. Really bad things can happen to me, and I'm still happy. Some circuit in my brain finds happiness and then weaves all past events into a narrative that supports that happiness: "If I didn't have hundreds of thousands of gambling profits stolen, I wouldn't have become a writer and put out a few books. Therefore I'm glad that I lost that money."