The fact that blogging has taken off in the last five or six years is evidence that people like publicly sharing their thoughts about food and politics and Jersey Shore. It does not at all mean that we've gotten comfortable with information we thought was private — our phone numbers, our drunken photos, our private wall-to-wall chats — suddenly being upchucked onto the World Wide Web in one messy and meaningless purge of regional networks.
Privacy is about control, and when Facebook changes its privacy control rules every six months to keep pace with the zeitgeist (or whatever), its users lose both control and privacy.
Here are some signs that you need to create a not-to-do list:
* You’re always working overtime.
* You never have time to sit and think.
* You manage crises well, because that’s the only kind of management you ever do.
* You’re the bottleneck for work that’s not getting done on your project.
* Papers sit in your inbox for weeks, and you’re hopelessly behind in your email.
* You take refuge in the technical work because you’re uncomfortable with the management work you’re supposed to do.
* You get depressed looking at the ever-growing pile of paper on your desk.
* Your to-do list is a write-only list; things go on but never come off.
* You are doing more work but your manager is less satisfied with your performance.
I’m including two additional techniques that significantly changed my game:
1. Periodically sweep things. No matter how well you organize things, you’ll need to periodically sweep. Sweeping simply means cleaning things up after the fact…When you revisit things, after the fact, you also gain the benefit of hind sight. Make the time now and then to make a pass through your collections. Get rid of what you don’t need. Archive things that you don’t currently need. Restructure your information to support your usage scenarios…
2. Reduce friction. Whenever you find that you’re working too hard to either find, organize, or use your information, pay attention to the friction. Work to reduce the friction. This might mean getting more information out of your way. It might mean bubbling more things up to where you can find them quickly. The key is to make it easy to use your information, and don’t let it become a burden.
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