(Personal) Development Hell

Today I am on a training course, and where there is training you know SMART objectives won’t be far behind. These suited and booted cousins of the New Year Resolution may be more effective but they’re a tenth as fun. If you’re lucky enough not to meet them, the word stands for Specific, Measurable, Actionable, Relevant and Timely (I think). When I walked in the training room – sorry the ‘Learning Zone’ – I was handed a sheaf of papers to fill in which will add up to about twenty of these things, each of them squatting on my professional conscience. So far I have tried to make them as painless as possible – ‘sort out my email’, ‘find a pad’ – but worse is to come. What I particularly hate about them – and this goes for time management in general, which is why I need these things – is how they systematically remove any remaining elements of surprise from the working day. Even if the surprise is an unpleasant one – viz. completely forgetting something terrifically important – it at least gets the brain moving.