Category Archives: Life

A new parent for the second time

4 days ago, my second child was born.

Dror, my first Son, stepped out into the ring, weighing 3.255 KG.

In the first pregnancy period, Every little things was exciting. every check-up, every ultra-sound, etc.

The second time around, let’s face it. you are less excited.

You come to some of the check-ups, you are less attentive to your wife needs, it’s “another pregnancy”…

Well… I thought the birth process itself would also be less exciting, but… when I saw my kid and the tears came out I realized I was wrong.

Yesterday, I’ve put both my kids to sleep. I have to say that passing between the two rooms and realizing I now have two kids was a real empowering feeling.

Well… sleepless nights… here we come… πŸ™‚


Why do today what you can do tomorrow? (Procrastination)

β€œNever put off until tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow.” ― Mark Twain

Procrastination – “…the act of replacing high-priority actions with tasks of lower priority, or doing something from which one derives enjoyment, and thus putting off important tasks to a later time.”

Yep, almost all of us do it from time to time.

It could be that homework assignment you should have started a month ago, the room you haven’t tided up since you moved to your apartment or The workout plan you promised you will start the next week…

Almost all of us have some “high priority” things we know we “have to” but avoid doing it “now” πŸ™‚

We build a to-do list, knowing that some of the items will never get done. they will keep nibbling at our conscience, but we will never find the time to do them.

This of course leads to a feeling of dissatisfaction. “why can’t I get it done?”.

so… why does it happen?

Most of us enjoy setting a list of Goals\Tasks. This gives us a feeling of satisfaction from accomplishments and progress.

But… we have limited resources… time…

So, we end up with a big list which needs priorities. More enjoyable stuff will take less time due to their nature, causing less enjoyable stuff to be postponed. This is the basic human nature.

Cleaning up the list is not a simple task πŸ™‚

Same as in any addiction, the first step is to admit we are procrastinating. It is not a definition of what we are but of what we are doing. it is not a genetic issue but rather a learned behavior, so as any other habit we can learn to avoid it.

My tips would be:

  • Don’t define goals which are not reasonable. You should either give it sufficient time to begin with or admit it cannot be done.

 

  • When something can be done right now, just do it. It’s amazing how a simple task can grow branches when it gets delayed.

 

  • Set a dedicated slot in your Weekly\Daily routine for cleaning up your list of tasks. figuring how much time you ACTUALLY have will help you in defining what you really can and can’t do.

 

  • When something gets delayed for a very long time, it’s probably time to say goodbye, Unless it got new priorities. the fact it was not prioritized till now means it should probably be left alone.

 

Some interesting reads:

 

Good and Bad Procrastination

How Seinfeld’s productivity secret fixed my procrastination problem

An Algorithm for Beating Procrastination

 


Jobs Diversity

Diversity. that’s what it is all about…

Most people I know worked in maybe two, sometimes three different jobs.

In the IT , most of the people started programming in high school, a lot of them even programmed in their military service and continued so till today.

There have been occasions in which I came across people who originated from other expertise fields such as Video photographers,Β  Renovation contractors and even Electricians.

I started working at the age of 16 or so.

My first actual job was as member of a stage crew, setting up sound and light system for different stages. Small rock concerts, high school graduation events and so on… I did it for around a year and a half or so. I got to see a lot of interesting events and learned a lot of technical stuff regarding sound systems.

After that I went to the army for a couple of years.

Finishing the army I went to a trip abroad for almost a year. During the trip I worked a while in apple and peach picking. It was pretty hard, waking up at 5:30 every morning, starting picking at 6:30-7:00 till 18:00 in the evening. I think the prodigy music I heard while picking was what kept me going πŸ™‚

During my trip hitch-hiking, I came across a 70 year old farmer who told me he held 35 different positions in his lifetime! during a two hours ride he described each and every one of them, roaming between a circus clown and an architect, finally resulting in being a farmer.

I remember thinking to myself: “that sound like a truly fulfilling life”.

After I returned, I started working as a school’s scheduler planner. I did that every summer for 6 years after. I got acquainted with the educational system a bit and felt like I was solving puzzles all the time. It was a very challenging job. I estimate I worked with around 130 different schools in these years and scheduled around 300 schedules.

After that, I worked a bit as a waiter in a small Italian restaurant. Learned a bit about Italian food, wine, and ate a lot of pasta!

Next job was in Sales in a Telemarketing company. I worked about half a year there and got some experience at costumer service and Sales. Eventually, I felt as if I could sell any crap to anyone and that felt wrong, so I moved on…

Next was at a security company. I worked both as a Security officer and as a guard. I mostly worked nights and studied during the day. It was a very stressful period which lasted around a year and a half.

My next job was in a security alarm center, monitoring alarms in shops and houses. I sat in front of two monitors, each displaying between 20-40 lines of alarms from which I had to figure out which one was an actual burglary and which were just bad detectors. Notifying the police on a wrong alarm would have resulted in a fine!

Later on I moved to Beer-Sheva to study computer science. Since I was a film editor (self taught) and a cinema fan, I found a job in the university cinema, screening movies on film. I think one of the most exciting moment I still remember was screening cinema paradiso, a movie about a projectionist…

I worked as a projectionist for two years, a period in which I saw a lot of movies

After that, I started working as a student and later on as a full time job in software engineering and been here ever since.

I think every job I worked on the way taught me something and It helps me get some perspective on my day to day routine. I feel lucky for that

Yep, Diversity is what it is all about…


Sorry, we are only hiring #487

A Pessimistic prophecy by an Optimistic guy πŸ™‚

Back in the old days…

when a boy wanted to find his match, he would go on dates, see if there’s a match and then decide if he wants to move on…

Today, we have all kind of “dating” sites which allows us to filter out people we will meet up with by easily clicking on some filter options:

Is he a smoker? religious? what’s his age range? and so on…

On another issue, many sites today try to personalize your experience. recommend things based on your prior purchases (“People who bought this cat hairbrush also bought the amazing foot massage machine“), post adds based on your searches, etc.

Why are these two things related?Β  Categorizing people.

Yep, It is a lot easier to categorize people. we all know it. it saves time and effort and a lot of inconveniences.

We do it all the time, whether consciously or not. but why?

There are hundreds of assays written on this matter, for example The psychology of prejudice. And there are even guides on How to categories personalities.

Basically, it comes down to this – It’s easier, a lot easier!

We feel insecure when confronted with someone we don’t know. We don’t understand how he thinks, what he likes, etc. so, we try to categorize him since that will allow us to “know” him much quicker, right?

So, I would meet the love of my life since he passed a filter saying he is “semi-religious, likes long hikes…”, and if a person bought something, we can probably guess what he’ll need next since we are all so predictable and simple to understand. there is probably some good mathematical formula that explains us. and if it is not the case and our engine failed to find a match, this just means we need to adjust the formula.

Well…

The way these things are going, we can pretty much assume that, as technology and math advances, each person can comply to a formula and even a number. yes, a number…

For the sake of argument, let’s say we can all be mapped to 1,000 types of personalities. wouldn’t that be simpler? Think about it…

The dating ads\engines will just say “#576 looking for #876 OR #324”.

HR people will not have to go as far as to advertise all job requirements, they’ll just be looking for numbers…

Is it that far fetched? hmm….


Back to Speaking

Starting tomorrow, I am starting to talk again.

For those of you who have not yet done so, I suggest you first read my previous post “Talk, Talk and Talk”.

After two weeks of silence, two weeks of scrabbling on papers and having notepad as my best friend, I would finally be welcomed back to society. back to the “normal” people. those who communicate verbally.

I have to admit, it was a lot harder than I thought it would be. a lot. and it got harder every day.

why?

I can’t pinpoint to a single thing that explains it. it’s, as in many cases, a combination…

I would always walk around with some way of writing. either a pocket notebook or my cell phone. there were occasions in which a simple hand or head signal would suffice but that was very limiting.

I avoided complicated tasks. even ordering food at a coffee shop or a restaurant would end up in me pointing on the menu like my baby daughter, only she could say “this”.

I hardly met up with friends since I felt it would be a bit awkward. When I did meet up with some friends I found out I was wrong. it was VERY awkward and frustrating. I guess it depends on the type of person you are, but the most common frustrating feeling was felt anytime a subject was raised on which I had something to say.

If any of you ever traveled alone somewhere, discovered amazing places or experienced new things and felt the need to share and suddenly realized you have no one to share it with, that’s the feeling. but mostly intellectually. Basic feeling could still be signaled using facial expressions. but thoughts….. nope.

I chatted all the time. Gmail, Skype, Facebook… it’s amazing how many people are available almost all day long on all these platforms. after a while my friends figured, “why should we chat” so we started phone-chatting. they would phone, I would write. this was weird. first of all, every time any of them phoned they’d start be saying: “hello?”, waiting for my answer. 5 seconds after they would go “hmmm… right…”. the chat editor looked funny since it only showed my side of the conversation.

All of you, speakers out there, listen up….

We, the non speakers sometimes need more time to communicate, so patience…

I’ve improved my mime skills a lot and discovered how important it is for the other person to repeat verbally on what he understood. I came across many occasions on which the other sided nodded intensively only to find out later on he did not understand me at all.

On one end, I did enjoy the silence. on the other, it freaked me out sometimes. there’s the notion that you should think twice before saying some things? well… I had the chance to think about it more.

I would suggest to all of you to try it for a day or two. you would come to notice how commonly without thinking you speak and learn to appreciate this ability a bit more.


Talk, Talk and Talk!

Trust me, you don’t appreciate this ability enough!

A few years ago, I broke my leg in a stupid accident. I had to walk with a cast on for a month. suddenly, everywhere I went was missing an elevator. everything was stairs, stairs, stairs.

A week ago, I’ve undergone an operation in my vocal cord after which I was not allowed to speak at all for two weeks. Sure, I thought to myself, it will be an extended vipassana, no problem, I can do it. what I forgot is that I am doing it alone, trying to continue a normal routine with my wife and baby daughter.

It started off pretty easy, the first 3-4 days went by quickly, my cell phone mode switched from phone calls to text messages mode and My wife became my main spokeswoman.

Terrorist attack

On the fifth day I went shopping. as in any shopping center in Israel, as I was pulling in with my car, the guard stopped me for a routine check to see if everything is OK.

how are you doing?”, he asked.

And I started waving my hands signaling I cannot talk.

is everything OK?”, he continued.

I did what I could which is node with my head.

Seeing I’m a nice and harmless guy… he pulled me over and thoroughly checked my car.

The conclusion was clear – I should have shaved that morning!

One pizza – coming up!

The other frustrating encounter I had was at the end of the week. I was home alone, my wife went away to her parents and I decided I’ll order a pizza. pretty simple task, right?

well, I made my order through the internet and watched television waiting for my order. an hour passed. well, it gets delayed sometimes, so I waited…

Another 40 minutes passed and I was starting to feel frustrated. I can’t even call and ask them what’s up! what can I do?

So, I texted my wife with the phone number of the pizza branch and all details. she called me back and said they are sorry and it will be ready soon. 10 minutes after I received a phone call from the pizza branch, but I couldn’t answer my phone! so, I texted my wife again telling her to contact them. apparently they were not sure about the address.

well… 2.5 hours after I originally ordered, I finally got my pizza. it was a horrible pizza on top of all.

I’ve got one week to go…