For awhile I swore by using Toggl, a tool that let me keep track of all the time I was spending on client work. As I moved between tasks, I was moving between tabs, making sure I’d start the timer. If I went to make coffee, stop the timer!
Come back to work, wait, a new email to check, which leads me to jump into another project – change tabs, start the timer with this other client.
I’m not sure if it was the constant timer going in the tab that wiped me out, or the number of times I’d have to switch tabs to start, stop, and manage my timer, but I quit.
Yeah, Parkinson’s Law says that work expands to the amount of time we give it, but fuck it… I’m tired of trying to super efficient, shaving minutes from tasks, or feeling guilty for only being so far into a task at the 10 minute mark, or the 25 minute work.
Things that usually took 15 minutes were now taking 30 – what’s wrong with my work ethic?! My productivity is lacking!
And then, oh yeah – we’re living in the middle of a pandemic. I can’t go out for an afternoon coffee, go to a show at night to see one of the bands I work, meet a friend for a movie, go to the gym – no, my entire social life and down-time activities have been eliminated.
No wonder I have a problem focusing, and I know others are feeling it, too.
So don’t beat yourself up if you’re feeling this. There’s nothing normal about this moment in history that we’re living in. And believe me, 2020 will be talked about for decades, adding to the horrible history of America.