I have a bad habit of not attempting things that I feel I could potentially fail at. I believe this is one of the reasons for the success that I have in my life, such as it is. BUT it’s also the reason I don’t have more success. It’s why I haven’t launched any of the umpteen web apps & services I’ve built over the years. It’s why I procrastinated for so long on creating the London PHP Meetup.
I used to make a habit of tackling these sorts of fears head-on. For example, throughout high school and university I was deathly afraid of public speaking, and believed I had a poor memory. To combat that I auditioned for the play Hamlet and got the part of Claudius. I had to memorize over 600 lines, and it took over 3 hours to perform, 3 nights in a row. It completely eliminated my fear, and I even got a shout out in the local newspaper for having given a good performance. I’ve continued to speak publicly since then, at developer conferences and meetups, but I haven’t tackled other things that are actually holding me back.
That changes on Monday. Ever since I started receiving and paying for student loans, I have had a mental block against spreadsheets and numbers (and unexpected phone calls).
At work, I have had to get comfortable with the phone, as I am doing some account management these days, in addition to all the one-on-one meetings I do with my team. So what about spreadsheets and numbers?
Well, as of Monday our 30 person company’s sole Project Manager is going on a leave of absence for 8 weeks, and I’m adding his duties to mine until he gets back.
That means I’m scheduling everyone’s work, tracking everyone’s hours, calculating anticipated vs realized revenue, figuring out our WIP numbers, and lots more. If I screw up, it could be disastrous. Nothing quite like jumping into the deep end to teach yourself how to swim.
Wish me luck on twitter @lo_fye