#BlogElul Day 2: Act

After 27 years in IT, I’ve developed a conflicted relationship with the idea of “acting”.

On the one hand, I’ve seen coworkers locked into an infinite loop of planning, research, testing, etc and ultimately FAILING to act (the now cliche concept of “analysis paralysis”), and I’ve been afflicted with it myself.

And on the other, I’ve seen people make the mistake (sometimes career-ending) of acting too soon, without consideration or forethought or (as I discussed yesterday) planning.

Ultimately I have no solid advice for avoiding either anti-pattern. Except perhaps to always commit to only making a particular mistake once, and then learning everything you can from it.

As a famous story relates, there once was a person who sought out a great Rabbi for advice.

“Oh great Rabbi,” they implored, “What is the secret to a happy life?”
“That’s easy!” the Rabbi exclaimed, “Use good judgement.”
“OK,” said the petitioner, “and how does one acquire good judgement?”
“Also easy!” enthused the Rabbi, “Gain experience.”
“Wonderful,” said the person, feeling like they were finally getting somewhere. “And what does one do to gain experience?”
“Ah, that is the heart of the matter,” said the Rabbi, his voice dropping to a whisper. “Use bad judgement.”