Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Time Management Tuesday: The May Days Set-Aside Time And The What-the-Hell Effect

Well, my May Days experience has not been all I'd hoped for.

The conference I attended at the beginning of the month didn't cut into my May Days project work time all that much, since I was home one day and worked on it during a three-hour workshop at the conference on Sunday as well. However, those five days I spent getting sicker and sicker last week were definitely not part of the plan. I did May Days work three of them, at least once with a laptop in bed, but then lost the rest of the week, any hope of squeezing some time in on the weekend, and yesterday, too. As our May Days leader pointed out yesterday at our Facebook page, we've reached the halfway point for this project.  I  think I have nearly four pages of intro and a number of pages of notes for characters and scenes. 

Back in February, I wrote here about the What-the-Hell Effect. My understanding of the phenomena suggests that guilt over willpower/discipline setbacks is the big instigator in the "What-the-Hell Effect"--individuals feel guilt and frustration, a little self-hate, maybe, over what they see as their lack of ability to stay on task and figure, What's the point? What the Hell, this initiative is shot, I might as well give in.

I'm not feeling guilty over picking up a bacterium. However, losing time for any reason is always a frustrating setback. In this case, the loss isn't just related to The May Days, but to every other work and personal task I needed to do these past six days. This May did not work out the way it was supposed to. Things are not the way they were supposed to be. Since The May Days can't be what I'd planned, should I accept that they're a lost cause?

Well, that's a pointless question for me, because I'm too obsessive to give up on a short-term project like this. I said I was going to do this for a month, and I'll do it for a month, if I have to finish it on my knees. Or in bed, as I did last week. But for those readers who want to make a more rational decision, consider this:.

I still have a half a month.

Yes, we can do some rah-rah talk here, get a little Zenny about putting last week into the past (which, you know, is where it is), but the hard fact is that giving in to the "What-the-Hell Effect" in this case means losing half a month of work. When we're talking about time management, giving in to the "What-the-Hell Effect" always means losing the time we would have worked if we had picked ourselves up off the mat after our discipline slip and kept going.

To make a long story short, I'll be working for a while on my May Days project today.

1 comment:

Jeannine Atkins said...


I know there are no grades, but I think you gave the correct answer. I'm glad you're feeling better.