Thursday, August 02, 2007

Parkinson's Law Is Far More Interesting Than It Sounds

I never knew there was a name for the phenomenon in which work expands to fill all the time available for it, but there is: Parkinson's Law. Aha! Yes, this explains how even when work is slow I'm working all the time. Work has expanded simply to fill all the time that I give it.

The solution? Set strict time limits on work (e.g., 2 hours to finish this task) or work will expand to fill all the time you have. You don't want that.

One issue that comes up again and again here is how to use spirituality to cope with enormous amounts of work. I think Parkinson's Law makes it clear that at least part of the strategy is to place clear boundaries around your time in the workplace (even if you work at home).

Via Zen Habits