So I now find myself back in the old place, piles of stuff everywhere, as I move back in and try to improve the situation here, try to make this the best home, the best living environment, that I can.
And there’s so many different pieces, so many different things, and the to-do list has just exploded.
And this is even a relatively simple thing.I mean, I’m just fixing up basic things, moving in.
Our to-do lists can get so complicated.
There’s so many things to do, even for simple life, but then we add complications, awkward situations, challenging situations, and the list of things to do can become so big that we don’t even know where to start.
And that can be a difficult position, where we can feel that something needs to be improved, something’s off, but not sure where to start, because it seems like so many things.
Now, one approach is just to say “Do something”.
And that that always has some value to it, because if you have a big mess, a big problem, a big list of things to do, you can simply start taking out little pieces.
If you imagine a giant pile of mess, a giant pile of stuff, and you don’t necessarily need to find some kind of optimal path through it.
You can simply begin by removing some pieces around the edge of the mess.
Just pick them up and do something with them.
So just randomly starting whatever comes to mind is, I think, a viable strategy for this.
But when we’re looking for the best way to approach these things, the best way to sort out our mess and simplify our situation, I like to think of some old advice that is given in chess.
So in the game of chess, you have 16 pieces, and you choose which to move.
It’s like you’re trying to improve the configuration of the board, the situation, and you have a chance to make one move.
And I think that metaphor can be applied to the things we’re doing, that yes, we have many different things to do, but we can only do one thing at a time.
And maybe the “Pick a random piece and just move it”: that doesn’t really work for chess as it might for cleaning up a mess.
But finding the best way to start, of course, there’s a whole world of strategy in chess, and so many things that the metaphor really gets strained for actually doing things in life in general.
I’m not playing against an opponent and trying to control a board or checkmate anything.
But just the idea of having multiple pieces that I can move, and trying to decide which one to move first.
And the simple classic advice is to move your worst piece.
Whatever is the worst thing going on, whatever is the most awkward, difficult, challenging, the most cringe part of your life, whatever is that thing that is the most troublesome: that is probably a good place to start.
If we just imagine our life as having so many different things going on, but if we just keep working on the bottom end, we keep working on those worst things, and moving them up, it’s like gradually our life will improve, our situation will improve.
As those worst things get improved, then, you know, maybe next week there’ll be slightly less bad things that are the worst thing, and then they can be improved, and so there’ll be this gradual movement upwards.
And of course, new surprises can always show up, and new worst things always show up, and they have to be dealt with.
But this is a simple question that we can ask to help to decide what is the priority for each day, each hour, each moment: what needs the most attention right now?
Simple old message but I like to call it to mind.
#lifechess #nextmove #worstpiece