*Not Really

Just ship. Seriously.:

Of course, telling people what they know (and believe) already is a time- honored tradition. It’s a huge industry in the western world. Telling people what they already know—and thus making them feel good about their own prescience, confirming their belief that they are correct, and also (maybe) encouraging them to do what they should be doing—is sometimes referred to as “self-help.” …

Heck, I’d even argue that the small token amount of satisfaction we get from feeling correct and justified and thinking about doing what we already know we should do is actually antithetical to putting out the actual effort. It’s like emotional satisficing–it feels good enough, but with no effort, so we’re not moved powerfully enough by our remaining creative frustration to actually, well, move. …

And it seems like the more we talk about doing it, the more we think about it, the more we know our approach is right and the more we pat ourselves on the back for it, the less likely we are to ever do the thing.

[apophenia: does work/life balance exist?][2]:

Increasingly, only those bent on workaholism are valued as employees. Those who don’t push it to extremes are disregarded as lazy in many industries. There is pressure to work 24/7 and there are plenty of folks who take this seriously, even if it’s not in their best interests let alone the rest of society’s. I get so ravingly mad at my (primarily male) colleagues who work 14 hour days even though they have small children that they never see. It’s one thing to be a workaholic as a single 20-something; it’s another thing to be a workaholic as a parent. I get to see the flipside of that one - teens starved for attention, desperate to please in the hopes of being given attention and validation.

In addition to my artistic frustrations, I’ve also been having some serious professional dilemmas as well. This in a year when I am overall achieving more balance than I’ve ever experienced, and feeling more happiness and hope than I’ve ever been accustomed–in other words these frustrations exist, but I’m fully confident that their solutions await. I’m hoping that thinking aloud about both here in this forum will help. Both of the above pieces touched on some of what I’m feeling in the professional arena.

For some time I’ve concerned myself with working smarter, the goal to get more meaningful work done in less time. Unfortunately I have been frustrated in this goal more often than not. It does not help when the brunt of my work goes unrewarded, both from a monetary and wuffie standpoint. It does not help that the web has obliterated attention. It does not help that software design (what I’m good at) and software development (what I’m just ok at) are two very different domains. It doesn’t help that there are a LOT more jobs in the latter, and that most of the people doing the former are businesspeople who understand the marketplace but have zero understanding of the human processes that make software first useful, then beautiful, and finally meaningful, consequently flooding us with mostly crap software that we either love to hate (hello twitter) or just hate, full stop (hello myspace).

So, I’m thinking about going into construction. Somewhere in Alaska.*

[2]: http://www.zephoria.org/thoughts/archives/2008/04/06/does_worklife_b.html