Brainhacker: Do Less Stuff

I love the lifehacker website, really I do. But I’m not a writer there, so when I feel particularly life-hackerish, I do it here. This is one of those times.

One of the big problems with loving what you do, is that you tend to do too much. Really. Take me for instance, I have 3 jobs, all of which could easily be full time jobs. Sadly, I’m not doing a great job at any of them.

If you’re like me (God help you), and are a creative type person that loves what he does — you have more ideas than you have time to realize them. You probably also have more work than you can do, because you love the work you do, so you tend to take on too much. Take it from someone in the middle of such a scenario: DO MORE WITH LESS.

No, I’m not talking financially here, I’m talking time-wise. Do what you do, and do it REALLY well. Don’t cut corners so you can add a new project. Don’t over-commit because the new project is totally worthwhile. If the new project is that amazing, maybe replace something in your life with it rather than add to your existing schedule. Because here’s a secret: The new thing will replace something in your life. That “thing” it replaces may be the quality you produce in your current job. It may be sleep. It may be time with your family. Unfortunately, you won’t likely get to pick — it’ll just happen.

Really, you get to pick between doing a few things really well, or a bunch of things poorly. Perhaps on the next issue of Brainhacker, I’ll be able to tell you how to eliminate important things from your life. For now, I just urge you to stop before it’s too late.

3 thoughts on “Brainhacker: Do Less Stuff”

  1. I totally subscribe to your idea.

    Yesterday @ work, I really didn’t want to leave, I would have been there for three hours after my due work time, just because things were going great. But then, that would mean that my rest time at work would have diminished substantially.

    I had to choose and left, with an extra half hour already spent.

  2. Richard and I were just talking about something similar. I’ve recently discovered that while I *can* multi-task, I end up doing a poor to mediocre job on all of those tasks. Sometimes life calls for that and being able to multi-task at all can be a life saver. But ultimately I end up being unhappy with my work and end up producing so-so work in the process. I’m trying my best to be aware of this, and trying to set aside dedicated time to work on specific projects (even just not answering email in the middle of a project helps me tremendously, it turns out). So while what I bring up here is not *exactly* your point above, it does all tie in together in life’s ultimate quest to love what we do and do what we love (twss). Moral to the story, I hear ya! 😉


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