Wednesday, November 24, 2010


When tempted to vent your frustration in the form of a question ("What makes them think this is a good thing?" "Why are they asking us to do it that way?" and the ever popular "Who's bright idea was that?"), try imagining you are being asked the question and that you have to provide a serious, reasonable answer.

It might help. It might even put the situation into perspective. It will definitely provide you an opportunity to look just a little bit better -- better than you will if you blurt out the pointless question.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Better Choices

When faced with a new project, you have a dizzying number of options. Your experience and knowledge will trim those down considerably - you have a good idea of what will work, and what probably won't.

Still, there will be a lot of choices. And frequently - through habit or reflex or the simple comfort of the known - you'll make similar choices to those you have made in the past. And that can be fine. Wise, even. Assuming you have usually made the right choices.

Too often, you find yourself in a "here we go again" situation, not because you're dumb or incompetent but because the options you're used to selecting often lead to similar pitfalls or pinch points. Doesn't mean your path won't work - just that the same pain appears.

When you become conscious of this, it means you should back up, breathe, and think about how to make better choices.

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Saving Daylight

Does changing the clocks really make anything work better? Or is it busywork for society, pretending that we're doing something to improve efficiency (saving energy would fall under that heading), make daily life more user-friendly (arranging things so the farmers can work or so the kids can go to school with the benefit of daylight would fall under that one), and so on. But in a 24-hour world... in a world with electricity for that matter... is it just spinning our wheels?

Most of us are not dependent on natural light. Farmers get up in the dark, regardless of what the clock says (and livestock do not respect government edicts to 'change time'). The kids might have another week of going to school in the light (after a week of going to school in the dark because we changed the clocks to Daylight Savings Time last spring), but now they come home in the dark. Meanwhile we have sleep disturbed, appointments missed, traffic accidents.

So, for all the disruption, what is really gained?