Conflict and emotion

September 28, 2018

There are lots of books on "time management", but the real struggle today is attention management: staying focused in a world designed to distract.

What I call "distraction", facebook calls "engagement"—and it's something measured and rewarded at the highest levels of the company. That's not a force I want to fight.

But some distractions don't come from devices. One is conflict. A board I serve on has had a lot of conflict over the past months and it's surprised me how unbelievably distracting it's been.

It's gone on day after day and I can't believe how hard it is to ignore. I hope I never have major marital or home-life conflict, because it would make it almost impossible for me to function at work.

I'm still searching for strategies to "keep it in the box". Maybe only read "conflict email" before I exercise? Avoidance isn't always possible, when the conflict happens over something I care about a lot.

The lesson for me: pick my battles very carefully, especially those that entail a lot of conflict; be mindful of their huge cost to happiness and my attention.