19 October 2009

What a to-do to die today at a minute or two to two.

...well, OK, I didn't die. I ate lunch at a minute or two to two. But that would get in the way of a good title now, wouldn't it?

Every once in awhile I get it in my head that I've got life pretty easy, seeing as how I go to school, go to classes, and come home, all in far less time than it'd take me under most normal circumstances if I'd just worked a full-time job.

Then there's this past week.

In the last week, I've written a seven-page lab report, written a 4,000-word midterm paper, done three hours' worth of work on an accounting midterm, scored 126 out of a possible 100 on a Nutrition midterm (no, that's not a misprint---I got all the regular points and all the extra-credit points available), compiled a treasurer's report for the campus Entrepreneurship club, written a featured 1,000-word blog post on ESPN.com, done my Statistics midterm, and still found time to work on next week's Microsoft Access project for Information Systems 101 (95% complete, pending email from the prof.)

The kicker? Not counting time spent on the bus, all of the above took me my standard 12.5 hours of in-class time, 2 hours for the lab, 3 for the accounting midterm, 3.5 for the 4,000-word paper (I write like Mozart composed, in one big stream of consciousness), maybe half an hour for that blog post, an hour for the E-club stuff, three for the Statistics midterm, and no outside-class time on that IS101 project. Add up all of the above and that means I've spent 21.5 hours actually doing work.

Twenty-one and a half. And I've been more productive than I'd have been at a sixty hour a week job in some mind-numbing corporate drone office.

I am often accused of being lazy, work-shy, and ill-motivated. Bull. I just hate mindless busywork with the passion of a thousand burning suns, and that means I bust my ass when it comes time to actually do something important precisely because I'd much rather people not waste my time just because I'm somehow expected to put in a certain number of hours to validate myself.

If I ever have my own firm I'm going to be rolling in money because my ability to crank out work at seemingly superhuman speeds with no loss of accuracy means I'll be able to keep a larger client list than my competitors, which means more revenue in less time. Or, if I'm salaried for some corporation, nobody needs to know I'm playing Mount and Blade in my office on a non-company laptop just to give the impression that I'm a hard worker when in reality I'm just holding onto stuff until deadline so people don't get it in their heads that I don't have enough to do.

I've got great work-life balance, I just wish the "work" side would quit sticking artificial elephants on their end of the seesaw.

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