A client of mine is obsessed with the headshot she uses in her marketing material. The catch is that she isn’t getting any marketing material printed right now. Presumably she’ll be creating some flyers or postcards in the future, but nothing is on the horizon. So why the need to replace her headshot three times, and double-check to make sure the marketing department is aware of her new choice? Because it gives her an excuse to not focus on something else, perhaps something much more daunting around the corner.
There are obviously some psychological issues at play here (which, perhaps, I shouldn’t be making light of) but I think there’s also room to explore how we organize our thoughts. The headshot issue would be relatively easy to figure out, since it involves actual photos and actual emails, but what about issues that are less tangible, but yet still offer us welcome distractions from our difficult decisions. A deliberate, contemplative approach to how we go about doing our jobs would easily lead one to question why it is we go home with that feeling that we really didn’t get anything accomplished that day.
How much time do we spend writing emails that don’t really need to be written? How often do we find ourselves fixing the same mistake over and over again, without really addressing why the mistakes are being made? Are we really making progress towards an identifiable goal, or are we just treading water and trying to figure out why our arms are getting tired?
Or are we ignoring these issues all together because it’s more fun to take a new selfie for our business cards?