Spiral of Unproductivity

Way back in the end of March I posted about the Spiral of Suck. Essentially this is what happens to me on the racquetball courts sometimes when I do something stupid and get mad at myself, initiating a spiral of suckiness that ends with me angry at myself and incapable of hitting the ball.

I’d like to append a corollary to the Spiral of Suck. I’ll call it the Spiral of Unproductivity. I am by nature a very productive guy. I like to get things done. Occasionally, I’ll get slowed down on a project, which will get me frustrated. I’ll try to switch to another project, but just can’t get into it. I start flailing around, looking for a project that won’t immediately frustrate me, but as soon as I start any of them, I don’t feel like working on them. So I get frustrated with myself for being so unproductive. This frustration makes me feel less like working on a project, and soon I’m in a big hole of suck.

The downside to this spiral is that I haven’t found a way out of it yet. With racquetball, I can leave as soon as I recognize the spiral of suck and it won’t get too bad. With the spiral of unproductivity, I haven’t found a good way to get out of it. Even going out doesn’t seem to help. This usually happens on weekends, when I’ve got all kinds of errands that I SHOULD be running, but I just don’t get around to them. All I can hope is that the day gets done sooner.

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