Work-bingeing, flu, procrastination?
Posted April 30, 2009on:
Day Two at Xoozya
I strolled into Xoozya on my second day planning to spend the whole morning quietly in my office exploring the communication system and making the list of skills I thought I should maintain and those I thought I should learn in the near to medium future.
Crisis is the patron of procrastination
On my door was a yellow sticky, “Help, we have a proposal due today and we may not get it in on time. Could you help out? We need help proofing. Mary, @maryjane”. I unlocked my door and dumped my keys and bag in the bottom filing cabinet drawer, powered up my desktop, and searched for @maryjane. Games designer putting in a proposal to use games as a research tool. West block. I picked up the phone and said I would be right over. Nothing like an emergency to aid a little procrastination.
Flu – how clean is this desk?
I grabbed a pack of tissues and wipes – this is the year of the great flu epidemic and office desks are notoriously unhygenic – locked the door behind me, and headed out to the west block in search of @maryjane and her team. 7 grueling hours later, we’ve converted the files into pdf and sent them off.
Where did Day Two go? Tired and no further forward. That’s a terrible feeling isn’t it, and the fatigue after a work-binge is awful. We want to work but can’t think straight. For that matter, we can barely remember what we were doing before.
7x as productive
We don’t often apply ‘industrial management’ ideas to creativity but “Boise” has done. He studied the productivity of academics. People who work little and often are 7x more productive than people who binge-work. Binge work is disruptive. We ‘come down’ emotionally and physically, feel terrible and need time to recover. We also have to spend time picking up the threads of what we are doing.
Little and often is the golden rule. Write every day. Work on your main project every day. Gather a few resources for the next project. Spit and polish and go home!