This or That

I promised I'd write about my 3rd month at work, but nah, I'll do it someday later, perhaps when I complete 6 months or a year. :)

Back to regular programming, this is the Blog of Eternal Worries. It is not the Blog of How's my Life in Australia.

I'd like to share with you one of my favorite tricks (I don't have that many, actually). I just named it 'This or That', because it didn't have a name before and I thought it would be a good idea to give it a name.

First, let's introduce a problem. Do you find yourself with a pile of stuff to do and not knowing what to do first? Do you ever find yourself unable to choose what to do? Dear Reader, if you never have this sort of problem, you are blessed.

I have moments like these all time. To put it in simple examples: Should I wash the dishes, play PS4, go outside and walk a little, study, wash my laundry, buy groceries? What should I do first? That's just an example, but you can easily apply that to your work routine.

We usually have dozens of mini tasks to complete, which, if you are like me, you procrastinate. Sometimes you are good at procrastinating (Is it a good thing?) and you simply hit the most urgent stuff first and let the others become urgent then you have no choice other than do it.

Classic procrastination is horrible planning. You might get a boost of productivity, but you usually cannot make mistakes. You cut corners and you do a lousy job. You get a guilty feeling that once again you pulled at the last moment and it will eventually lead to your doom. Of course I digress, I love doing that.

The 'This or That' technique applies exactly when you are stuck in complex choices. Sometimes choosing between two is as hard as choosing among 4, 8, 20! You are still stuck and you can't decide what to do. Either you sit frustrated and unable to do any, or you forget about it and turn Netflix on again and leave the tasks for another day (that's procrastination, in case you didn't notice).

Get two choices - any two. And just ask yourself. Should I do this or should I do that? I mean, are you serious? All this talk to get this stupid question? Yeah. Ignore the rest for the moment. Compare the two choices. Understand what is behind each, what are you trying to accomplish, what is more important on the long run. And then, ta-da, just do it.

This is about making snap choices, and getting things done. This is about reducing your amplitude of vision and eyeing just a part of the bigger problem. And checking that item off your list. The trick is about momentum. Getting a decision made and doing something about it. If you lose momentum, if you make a decision and do nothing about it, you lost. That is why this is a trick. Of course you have a lot of things to do, and you are leaving the others behind. That is quite obvious that if one of the tasks should be done first because it is urgent, this is not the time to think about 'This or That', that would be misusing the technique.

'This or That' is a technique I use to hit lists of non-urgent tasks that must be done anyway.

How do you cope with your log of eternal tasks? Don't answer, because I don't have a comments field. hehe But ask yourself. Think about it.