I have recently come across Parkinson’s Law, which is really an amazing one, it has given me a new perspective on how much time should we allocate to a work. This law helps in getting more work done in less time than we have ever imagined.
So, there is nothing magical about this Law, as we are unaware of it, we fall into a trap and end up complaining the deadlines are too small (even when they are big enough).
Work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion
So, what does the law state? If I give you a work which can be completed in 2 hours but the deadline to complete it is also 2 hours then you will get it done in 2 hours no matter what.
But, if I give you 2 days to complete the same work then also the work takes 2 days to get completed. So, did the work change? Nope, did the person doing the work change? Nope, but the time taken to complete the task has changed, Why? because the mindset changes when the amount of time given for it to complete changes.
Every law has its own exceptions, this law or above scenario doesn’t apply to every individual, but applies to many of us who fail to understand the law and work at slow pace when deadline is far and work faster when the deadline is sooner.
This is the beauty of Parkinson’s law, as I have mentioned above, every law has its own assumptions, but I ask you pause for a while and question yourself whether you fall a prey for this law? If Yes, then this blog post is for you and I try to suggest some ways through which you can through this.
Get the Monkey of your Back
This is one of the favorite quotes of my colleague, he doesn’t like to keep a work pending though there is enough time to complete it. He always used to say – Lets get the monkey of our back. What he meant by this is, lets complete the task and chill instead of chilling.
Monkey on the back is never comfortable, it is an extra burden and not just a plain burden, it keeps annoying us with various things which a monkey does (similar is a task), a burden of having a task on head neither gives us peace to go onto another thing, we forcefully try to entertain us by skipping the doing of work at hand which is neither comfortable and nor uncomfortable.
So, when you are handed over a task, instead of waiting for the deadline to get near or fall prey to Parkinson’s Law to allow the whole time available irrespective of how much time the task actually takes.
Meeting the deadlines is not good enough, beating the deadlines is my expectation
– Dhirubhai Ambani (a self-made indian billionaire who started his life as a petrol bunk assistant)
So, try to complete the work with single minded focus until it gets completed and then go ahead with other one or entertainment so that you don’t waste the whole time allocated to you.
Getting more done counts
In a highly competitive world today, the more amount of work we get done in the time allocated to us counts and adds a lot of credits to our growth and career.
So, through this blog post I am not advicing you to work more harder or stretch more than you can, I am just suggesting a trap which we generally fall to get the work done by taking whole amount of time allocated to us – irrespective of whether the work needs that much amount of time or not to get completed.
Life is short, if we want more, then in the limited amount of time we have, we have to try to accomplish whatever we can with our abilities and as per Parkinson’s law our precious time gets robbed as the task fills the whole time alloted to us.
Everybody has only 24 hrs, none have a second more or less, but how we utilize the 24 hr we have determines what we can do in and with our life.
A completed task gives Satisfaction
The satisfaction a completed work gives is great and fulfilling, so try to complete the task at hand and that gives a great dopamine shot which your brain generally craves for. Don’t try to be a perfectionist (we’ll talk more about this in one more blog post). But, try to finish the task the best possible way you can and then try to improve upon it.
So, hope this blog post was helpful to you in understanding the Parkinson’s law to not fall in the trap and miss time, miss happiness, miss life etc.
I am Surya, began blogging to share my thoughts, which I feel are useful with the world as I do it with my friends.