August 12th, 2013

blackhat

(no subject)

Today is the first day back for a staff member who has been out since mid February fighting cancer of unknown primary origin. I haven't heard if she's heading in or working from home today, so i'll head in after my 7-8am meeting. (This one isn't going to be easy as i am instructing contractors who haven't impressed me with their ability to sort things out.)

The weekend was quiet and pleasant. I seem to be at an energy nadir, and see the patterns of self-distraction i recall from grad school. "I must read all of Usenet before starting on whatever it is i must be doing." I think this weekend my statement to myself that i have to address all the stuff that i have been avoiding -- poorly sorted stacks of stuff which may all be piffle, but may also include critical to-dos -- was a disappointment. Working on plant and photography is enjoyable and now a clear road to an unknown future. Going through things thrown into the Evernote incoming box and to-do lists written over the past few weeks with nothing checked off is not a clear road. All that task would trigger is a feeling of overwhelm: "Oh yeah, i said i was going to do that, too, didn't i. And it was due ... three days ago. Well, bother." The cognitive reward in that space is minimal.

OK, i know how to deal with it. I've done it before. Measure the stacks (pounds of paper, number of Evernotes and emails) and watch the numbers drop.

blackhat

(no subject)

So, i have quantized most of my Piles of Stuff

  • 6 install plans to write tonight (which will each spawn more tasks)

  • 7+12+5 work todos (that was many fewer than i thought -- but the 48 incoming evernote records will have more)

  • Physically: 6 books, 3 projects in LR; 36 oz papers in office

  • Evernote:48 incoming; 15 tag:+20130815; 37 tag:"+LATE_TICKLES"; 82 tag:@[Meeting]*

  • 48 email




My sister is going to have a stack of hours to herself for a week later this month. Let's say three hours a day. She and i talked about her using it for brainstorming/discernment time.

Is there a practice you engaged in for about that time frame that you've used to plan what you want to do for a year or so? I can cobble up something for her from the practices i've put together, but i'm curious if there are any practices you've had that helped you.