Monday, July 25, 2011

Where's time?

It's been crazy, these last few weeks. Whether it was 18 hour days at a stretch in Mumbai, or the blast that happened minutes after I crossed Colaba; housewarming parties that I just made, or the birthday parties that I just missed; all those who I planned to meet, or all those who I eventually ended up meeting; going to bed at 6 in the morning, or waking up at 4.

Over the last few weeks, I have been inundated with too many things at hand - workwise, and otherwise. All the way from developing pipelines to financial modeling to investor decks and government liaising to deal origination to conference calls, to top it up with unending travel. It has been overwhelming - the quantum of work I did not know I could do, that now I do. All this work has been helpful in learning, but also exhausting.

While I've learned a lot, I also got to know that there's a plethora of knowledge gathering tasks available to everyone. What I realized is that while we may want to perform well in everything we do and learn everything at hand, we will only be able to excel at only a few. Say, two. And we will have to pick which two these would be.

Realizing this broke me - I want to do well at everything. I want to do well in my work, I want to have a good social life outside work, I want to spend loads of time with friends and family, I want to make tons of new friends, I want to take part in countless activities, I want to take a break to travel, and so on and so forth. I began considering whether doing well in one area and doing a mediocre job in all the other areas would be acceptable, although this option does not satisfy me either. There are clearly some big decisions that I have to make about how I should manage my time.

I used to believe that by effectively managing my time, I would be able to do everything I want. I am now realising that this is simply not true. There are always going to be trade-offs and this is becoming glaringly obvious as hundreds of open tasks loom before me. Something has got to give. But I know that somehow I will figure out a plan that will work for me. It may take some trial and error and definitely fewer sleeping hours than I might like, but somehow I will have to make this work.