Pit of death

The opposite of the Best Case Scenario is the Pit of death.

image Falling into the Pit of death can happen quite quickly when we focus on results instead of focusing on actions. Lets take an example, suppose we have a bug to find. Our software works on my machine, but doesn’t work on Gil’s. As we are result oriented we want to solve the bug.

While analyzing and trying to fix the bug, I find that I go through several phases.

First I recognize the reality, the reality is that the application doesn’t work. So I start acting to fix it, I reinstall, reconfigure, uninstall, recompile and redeploy. After doing this for some time and not getting any results, I start changing my point of view (POV). Now my point of view is that the application is buggy.

After some more time trying to fix it and not succeeding, I change my POV, now the laptop is faulty.

Then the cpu is faulty, our IT person who didn’t upgrade the hardware – is faulty, the QA for not checking it – is faulty, the product manager for thinking of such a stupid application – is faulty, my manager for giving me this job – is faulty…

Then comes the real death POV…  I am a bad developer, I can’t seem to solve problems, others do it better than I can, this is really discouraging, I guess I don’t have it in me, I better switch professions…
I quit!

The reality hasn’t changed, its just our POV that has changed.

We moved from: This is a challenge – some application is faulty – someone else is faulty, to… I am faulty.

This can happen in all areas, Working Out, Losing Weight, Getting Promoted etc.

Leaving the Pit of Death

Leaving the pit of death is easy. Focus on controllable actions, not results, be in integrity. This will keep us positive and will eventually lead to success.

Here is how, “I intend to try 5 different ways to tackle this bug this hour”. That’s it.

Now try the 5 ways, in the best case scenario, we will solve the case. Otherwise, we are still men of our word and did what we committed to, that is a great feeling, now we can commit to trying another 5 ways in the next hour.

(Photo by magadelic_rock)

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