Time to get organized. Got my Powerbar, Advil. I check my messages, and while my schedule is downloading to the PDA, I head off to the coffee machine. I start to pour the steaming brew into my mug, and as unexpectedly as always, the aroma sends me into that dreaded purgatory of introspection. For a few brief moments I’m frozen in time, trapped in eternity, headed in a new direction with a single thought polarizing my mind:
"How can I get more done this week than I did last?"
Why are you asking that?
Be quiet. We’re not thinking about why. Just let him get some coffee.
Oh, come on. Don’t be a fool. You know that this impulse toward efficiency is just another example of your misguided measure of success in this new job. What is it you think he’s working for?
So it’s just himself, his own personal measuring stick?
No. Would you just be quiet? I’m trying to help him get organized. We need to be organized or we won’t be productive. Productivity is the goal, not some vague concept of achievement. And whatever you’re trying to do with this devil’s advocate thing isn’t helping. He’s already decided that.
Ah. Point for you. Yes, well done. Because you know, it would be difficult to try to explain this warring identity to his colleagues.
Sure. You’re right. You can’t afford to let him get derailed again because it would be uncomfortable facing this obsessively-efficient, business-bound mind of his, especially given that idealistic, spiritually-centered persona he likes to put up.
Okay. You want to know something? If anyone’s making him neurotic here, it’s you. You can’t even see how a little forethought into our week helps make time to engage in these cute little digressions? Writing, editing, family, friendships, church, blogging–it’s all possible because of my help. Discipline is actually the essence of freedom. But then, I wouldn’t expect a self-absorbed bleeding-heart like you to understand that. You can’t really think I’m using his need for acceptance.
Of course not. I think you’re using his need for congratulatory praise.
Right. My efforts to get organized are to pave a smoother path for more efficient ambition actualization. Something like that? "Focus the energy; become the reward. I AM the hot commodity of my obsession…"
Whatever you say. I just want to know this isn’t some new incarnation of the blind pursuit of success. Because from what I see, you’re right, I don’t understand it. What does a schedule organize other than the tangible elements of a supposed "successful work week"? How can you tell when you’ve found it?
Well, one luminous monument would be the absence of your blather. I’d give 20 synapses for that singular joy.
Your rancor is very telling.
Listen. Zoltan. Just let me get through this one task and we can dissect our psyche all night while he’s asleep if you like.
Fine. Be my guest. Just remember, he needs more than organization to survive.
Granted. And Rome wasn’t built in a day. I’ll keep that advice on file.
You know, it might do you some good to relax and get outside today. Go to the driving range.
There you go. That’s on the schedule.
"Golf at noon?"
Alright. If that’s how it has to be.
Yep. See you then.
I head back to my office with my mug and pass a new face in the hall. "You must be Mick." "Yeah." "Nice to meet you." "You too." Smile. "See you around."
Seems like a nice enough guy. Might be a golfer…