The difference between adults and children—besides so many other things—is perhaps the level of complexity their lives have. The older you get, the more it seems that you are being pulled into a thousand places. There’s a real worry about the death of spontaneity because the only real way to manage the increasing and often rather disparate tasks of adulthood seems to be a heavily regimented schedule or memorizing everything by simple repetition.
But, as I’m sure you’ve observed, schedules like that are soul-crushing, and the chances of keeping a schedule that operates on a minute-to-minute basis are why some people get jobs as professional secretaries to even maintain that for another person.
The resources that screw everyone over, it seems, is always money or time or both. And, as is the case with many of these articles where I pontificate on societal matters, I don’t flatly have a way for anyone to solve stuff—but I do have a few helpful hints that I’ve learned as someone who always seems to have his fingers in an alarming amount of pies.
The first is to just do the thing. Like, seriously, procrastination is common and stuff, but you have no idea how quickly you can fall out of routines—and it’s routines that manage our lives, sad to say. Especially with small random tasks: just do them. Seriously.
And the second—and some people don’t like doing this—is automation. We live in a technological age, and there is already too much to keep track of as it is, so make machines do it for you. A day of setting up systems, of organizing things and routines, allows you to be lazy, or at least focus on other activities later. Now, there’s a danger to automation, like most things, if you are careless with it. Machines don’t question infinite loops or stop themselves from overdrawing your bank account, but putting systems in place to handle tasks frees you up for new tasks.
And that’s really the only way to get ahead on this. Either drop tasks and do less, do those things more effectively and faster, or make someone or something do it for you.
Those are the options.
Special thanks to: Collin Pearman.
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