Time for Start-up Inside Baseball. When it's crunch time, you laugh at 60 hour weeks. You chew through 80 hour weeks. You grunt through 100 hour weeks. You do what it takes, knowing that, succeed or fail, that pace can't last forever. And sure enough, it doesn't. Soon you're back to that most dreaded of schedules - the 40 hour week.
After months of measuring productivity by the minute, forgoing sleep, neglecting yourself, the body acclimates to a sort of hyper-efficiency where every waking moment is in pursuit of a goal. This isn't healthy, but you become used to it, like a chronic injury. And when it's removed, when you can actually stop working at 6pm and do whatever you want, the brain starts screaming. Something is wrong! Get up off the mat! You're burning daylight! You start sorting through your email, flipping through collected business cards, calling up your staff, looking for something you can turn into a crisis, just to make the screaming stop.
All of this is perfectly insane, of course. But I think it's fairly common. I think it's one reason why so many of us are workaholics. Crunch time and crises condition us to look at each moment not spent dealing with emergencies as wasted time. We start to associate our self-worth with the amount of time we spend saving the company. And so we fill our lives with emergencies, just to feel normal.
Or do we? Am I alone in this? Let me know in the comments.