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It’s been a few months, but a while back there was quite a bit of news about Mark Zuckerberg’s wardrobe (see related article). From the Business Insider article: “He said even small decisions like choosing what to wear or what to eat for breakfast could be tiring and consume energy, and he didn’t want to waste any time on that.”
This actually makes a lot of sense to me in some aspects. While I wouldn’t want to have the same thing for breakfast every day (I like to “mix up” my smoothie ingredients), I can see the benefits to limiting decisions.
I recently updated a filing system (a real PAPER filing system). Had I wanted to, I could have come up with some kind of color coding system. But I just ran with what I had on hand for 2 reasons.
- It was on hand, so I didn’t need to make any runs to Staples or Office Depot and (more importantly)
- I could easily have spent days with an internal debate (do I have certain color hanging folders for “months” and others for “days” and others for “general” and others for “clients” or do I have certain tabs for the above — should I get multiple color pens for each different tab to make different things stand out.
These files are in a lidded case that nobody but me will ever need to see, and as you can see, there are yellow tabs and blue tabs and clear tabs, and blue and brown and yellow and … files, but there is no method to this. Because what really matters is what the tabs say, and that I have set this up to better organize myself and serve my clients needs.
If I had spent days fretting over which color scheme to go with, it wouldn’t have served anyone’s needs.
Sometimes it’s okay to have things planned out and look a certain way (for instance, a Powerpoint presentation, or a proposal), but when it doesn’t really matter, just remember the KISS principle. (Keep It Simple Stupid)
How do you simplify your decision making?
- Here’s The Real Reason Mark Zuckerberg Wears The Same T-Shirt Every Day Eugene Kim (businessinsider.com)
- Keeping it Simple Doesn’t Mean You’re Stupid. Amy Rees Anderson (forbes.com)
“Tips” Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
One thing many people struggle with is an overflow of incoming information. We have email (and sometimes multiple email accounts), phone calls, texts, tweets, and Facebook notifications coming at us from all directions. Sometimes it’s hard to filter out the flow of information. What can you do to prevent feeling overwhelmed?
Here are a few tips:
1. Prioritize. Determine who may need to urgently contact you, and set up a way that you can receive their information. For me, if I’m married to you, have given birth to you, or adopted you (or if you’re caring for one of the above), I will answer your calls. This means that my husband and children have very specific ringtones and the school nurse line has a specific ringtone. Other calls can (and often do) go to voicemail.
2. Turn it OFF. I’m fairly certain the default for everything on my Android phone is to have really irritating notifications turned on. This might not be true but I was noticing that I would often get rings and beeps and vibrates for many reasons during the day. I went through my settings and turned off notifications on most items that I did not deem important.
3. Schedule. There are certain times of the day that I focus on certain platforms. For example, I check email at 9, noon, and 3. I’m not distracted by email at other times (unless I’m waiting for information from a client), and when I’m checking email, that’s the only thing I’m focused on.
4. Get rid of it. (Thanks to Heartbleed.) When the Heartbleed bug caused us to need to change all our passwords, I had some issues with bringing certain things up on my phone. I found this to be a fortunate circumstance, as I discovered that I could actually manage without instant access to certain email accounts. I find some things are really best handled on my desktop computer instead of my phone.
The other thing that we have to allow ourselves and others is some breathing space. If I haven’t heard from someone in 24-48 hours, then I can bug them again. We tend to have an expectation of immediate responses, but (provided none of us are ER doctors) most things can wait.
Is Your Smartphone Making You Stupid? Kathy Colaiacovo. (timeontaskva.com)
(If I were to go where the weather suits my clothes, I’d have to go someplace where I could wear Birkenstock sandals year round).