Do you trust your inner voice?

Posted on October 6, 2011. Filed under: Apple, Procrastination, Steve Jobs |

I have not put much thought into why I have not called the customer, but he is constantly on my mind. I know exactly how he will respond. He will whine and fuss about the price and then he will try to bargain … “the charming Englishman went into a long explanation about how his client would react in the event of communication.
How many times have you had that conversation with your customer in your head? I wondered silently. The man looks at me in surprise.

This week I have worked in a sunny and warm London. My rain jacket took unnecessary space in my little bag and was completely unused. The mood of the participants, was just as shiny, they were curious and threw themselves into the new knowledge of procrastination behavior and the art of getting the brain to perform effectively in an ever-increasing flow of information.

What do you put off? What excuses do you use in order to not to deal with what you know you should? Does it happen sometimes that you spend more time thinking about what you should do, than what it actually takes time to do it?

After 16 years teaching efficiency, I have heard and seen a lot. It’s hard to shock me.

All participants agree that it is human nature to procrastinate, especially that which is hard, boring, difficult, uncomfortable and time consuming. They usually bring up examples from the private to-do list, like going to the dentist, renovation projects at home that has not been completed, the tax declaration, change tires on the car, sort photos, clean out the basement, attic, old clothes.

On the job list they mention stacks of paper that should be inserted in binders, travel expenses that accumulate until you cannot remember where you went and emails far down in the inbox that flashes each time you scroll the bar …

“Yes, I procrastinate but it is not my fault.” Exclaims a dark-haired Englishman in his 40s “I’m constantly interrupted so I have to put things off for later. I may as well never finish! ”

Is it always so? Or could it be that we sometimes desperately seek someone who can give us a reason to not do the boring tasks?
Does anyone need any help, anyone? I’ll get coffee, someone else wants? I ought to take hold of that task now, but … first I have to call someone, anyone, actually.

Certainly it is important to listen to your inner voice, but which one? One participant reflected on his inner voice the other week. “It feels like I have an angel on one shoulder and a devil on the other. Angel says that I am capable and have the right to defer some things and the devil says I’m a lazy bastard with no discipline at all. Usually I get so tired of hearing their argument that I’m doing something completely different. ”

It is not unusual that we go to work with the best intentions and then we get stuck in the inbox, and emails, and the day passes. The meetings follow one another, you will have lunch and new tasks. Your conscience grinds and grinds all the time and we are constantly chasing every minute to finally get to sit down. When the storm is over and we have a moment of our own own to-do list, we are so tired and overwhelmed by everything we should have done that we do the strangest things instead.
Wondering how it goes with my Facebook page? Should I catch up on the news pages?

The brain has a tendency to procrastinate things when the next step is unclear. The choice of least resistance will persuade you to quickly take something that is simpler, faster and more fun, so you get a little endorphin rush as a reward because you managed to finish anything. But was it important?

A reflection is that sometimes it is not the job itself that is annoying, but thoughts about the job before you have done it. And if they’re so annoying, why not take the enormous pleasure of getting them done. Imagine the energy it provides.

When I went home from London, I thought sadly that it is now one year since my beloved mother left us. A year … Already? The headlines in Stockholm, told me another beloved soul has passed away. It strikes me that some things we cannot procrastinate. Soon enough we will all walk that path.

“Remembering that I’ll be dead soon is the most important tool I’ve ever encountered to help me make the big choices in life. Because almost everything — all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure — these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart”
Steve Jobs
A nice weekend, I wish you and your inner voice

Petra Brask

 “Don’t let the noise of others’ opinions drown out your own inner voice.”
Steve Jobs (1955-2011)


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