Like many people, I dislike chores. My general approach to most things in life is to batch process things, I pile stuff up so that I can do it all once infrequently rather than doing it a little at a time. Usually this works pretty well, but every so often laziness overcomes responsibility, the system breaks down and I end up in holding pattern.
Over the years I’ve realized that my mood is very affected by my environment. When I have piles of dirty laundry and am wearing the shirts that I don’t particularly like, my mood switches to one where I am effectively writing off the day: I’m waiting for things to change before I start trying again.
It is a frustrating mood to be in, because by its nature it prevents change, as more work piles up the initial kick required to surmount the hill encourages one to put things off further, and onward it goes.
It’s a common pattern, probably a decent number of programmers run into it in their work lives: if you aren’t starting with the best footing, why start at all? A frequent example I’ve heard from many people is that since some piece of work will require a big chunk of time to complete, it isn’t even worth working on it until you are going to have that big piece of time uninterrupted.
Most of the time this is probably just an excuse, ammunition for procrastination. In reality many things probably don’t take as much time or effort as we remember them taking.
After procrastinating a while by reading wikipedia’s list of biases in judgement and decision making, I feel I should make a larger effort to remember overcoming that hill so that next time it doesn’t look so big.