Wednesday, August 03, 2022

Anticipated Interruptions


The problem of interruptions in the course of the workday is often mentioned, perhaps because it comes from others.

The problem of anticipated interruptions, however, may be mentioned less often because they are self-imposed.

Example: You anticipate that you'll be getting a call from a person about subject X. That call may or may not come but you go through the day with the anticipation of the interruption actually providing low-grade interruption as you go about your work.

Some possible solutions:

  1. Set an appointment for the phone call. That way you'll at least know when the discussion will take place.
  2. Don't set an appointment but decide that if you are contacted, you'll only provide a brief review of perhaps three key points. Any additional elaboration will require a meeting. That will require less preparation and you'll have a plan of action.
  3. Go full Stoic. Be indifferent as to whether the person calls but know that even if you are contacted, you don't need to reply in lapidary prose. You can think out loud and that will be fine. Pressure fades.
In most cases, I prefer option 3.

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