Mental pressure

As I sit here with a thousand things to do, I feel the pressure. Not the pressure of deadlines, but the frustration of having so much to do that it feels like I will never be done. It feels like a physical weight on my mind, pressing in on me and making it hard to start.

I have long been critical of multitasking, and that’s a topic I’ll delve into more in the future. In this case, that’s not what I’m talking about – I’m talking about having many tasks to do in a day, even if you do each of them one at a time. Have you ever sat down at the beginning of the day, knowing how much there was you had to do, and quietly despaired? That. That is what I’m talking about.

I think it’s the natural state of human beings to work on less. Not necessarily do less work, but to work on fewer discrete items or projects. I could evoke stories about hunter-gathers to back this up, but I don’t need to. I’ll bring it closer to home – I personally have never been more happy than the days when I had to 3-5 things to do, and then I was done. And I’ve never been more productive either.

Life will try to force a thousand priorities on you, and sometimes you won’t be able to refuse. That’s where I am today. Yet I will push back tomorrow, and try to do more on less. And I’ll be happier for it.