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Avoid being over – working out the balance

The searching for the balance is a constant. The work / life balance is the most common. There are other balances that must be worked out, too.

I don’t want to overrate this topic, but I consider it important to remember that, when talking about projects (and in several other areas of our lives), it’s important to avoid the caveats of being over. By ‘over’ I mean basically anything related to being over-optimistic,over-pessimistic, over-perfectionist, over-communicator. These are only examples, you name it. I’ll put afew comments about the ‘over’ idea itself rather than any specific aspect.

Being ‘over’ is a personality trait, basically. If you always tend to grey scales rather than black or write, you might be lucky. However, I’d say that it’s harder than we believe to find people tending to a more vision with balance (in any topic). Furthermore, if you believe you’re balanced, think twice: you may be biased by your own experiences. Maybe, you just didn’t realize how ‘over’ you are. Assess where you balance is.

Notice: I’m not saying that being over is bad per se; instead, the main problem is being over and not realizing it. You can be extremely over-optimistic but being humble enough to ask for advice from pessimistic people (looking towards a more balanced view of the object in question). Unfortunately, my past experiences proved to me that we tend to keep around ourselves people that think like us, instead of chasing for a balance between the forces, i.e. gathering around us people with different thoughts.

But, how to identify where you are? The most straightforward way to evaluate how over you are, is by reviewing your past experiences. I must confess that for years, I was over-optimistic… and it had thrown me into several delicate situations. I tended to believe that miraculously things could eventually get on track in the future. After a few failures, though, I believe I’m still optimistic (I can’t help it, as we can’t help much when dealing with personality traits) but now I’m aware of it… and when handling any kind of estimate, I tend to consciously add what I call ‘self-padding’.

The important thing is to constantly assess your actions with the environment you’re working with. If you’re working on a project that requires all your creativity, you simply won’t ever be over-creative (since you’re there just because you’re creative!). But depending on the spot are – especially if you’re the newbie around – you may (for instance) be over-communicative, saying something (about the last project, last job, ex-partner) that was beyond your ‘level of communication’ with the audience.

The bottom line when talking about being ‘over’ is to get to know yourself and the environment you’re working with, in order to avoid any conflicts because of any unexpected lack of affinity.


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