Downtime between holidays allows me to catch up on some of my RSS feeds, open tabs and twitter faves (hello, my name is Robin and I’m an incompetent multitasker…) I’ve stumbled across this beautiful Venn diagram and it’s really hit home today.
This isn’t a new concept in graphic design or life, but it’s always a great reminder that we can’t do it all. In projects, as in life, we need to set priorities of what we focus on in order to accomplish the end goal. You need it great but not cost a lot of money? Then my other (paying) projects come first, and I’ll work on this in my spare time. You need it Monday and it has to be fantastic? Then my weekend is definitely going to cost you. It’s like being at the Chinese buffet, and you realize you can’t have the orange chicken unless you opt out of either the lo mein or the spicy beef. It’s as simple as that. “You pick two” really does mean you have to make a conscious decision to leave something off your plate; we simply cannot do it all, no matter how much we’d like to believe we can handle it. The overlap areas of “just in time to be too late” and “dipped in ugly sauce with haste and carelessness” strike uncomfortably close to home for me, and the added bonus reminder of how well “free” works out on the Venn diagram only highlights what my friend Kevin Prentiss keeps trying to tell me–that no matter how much we’d like to believe the goodness of our heart is enough; there’s nothing quite like the promise of payment to motivate us to get the job done. Otherwise, everything else comes before it.