just walk away

Is there a worse way to start your day than in conflict? I doubt it.

Is there a worse conflict to get into than with your computer? Oh very certainly.

But when your work day and your conflict with your computer start at the same time, in the same place, it can lead to total failure on the productivity scale. It’s a bad idea to work angry – almost as bad as going to bed angry. In fact, it’s probably a bad idea to do most anything when you’re angry… but let’s leave that to the experts and concentrate on work and computers.

Here’s the first thing to remember when you get into conflict with your computer: IT’S ONLY A MACHINE. I know, this is difficult to keep in mind, especially when you’ve set your MACHINE up to welcome you to work and tell you how terrific you look this morning… but really, it IS just a machine. A fabulous, useful, work enhancing, load reducing, costs too much, high maintenance, can’t get by without it machine. Fact is, you probably couldn’t do your job as well or as efficiently as you do, without it. So now what?

Well, after you remember it’s only a machine, remember that it’s also a somewhat delicate machine. Bashing your fists on the keyboard will not produce the results you’re after, unless that result is destruction. Oh yes, I know, keyboards are cheap. But they leave nasty little dents in your hands, and they are very capable of breaking through glass when thrown with enough force. That’s NOT cheap.

And that monitor… oh the monitor that you would so LOVE to pick up and hurl at the wall?? That’s NOT so cheap. (Especially if you’re lucky enough to have one of those lovely flat ones that takes up no room and is light and easy to throw.) So what do you do? DO NOT throw your coffee mug at it, THAT I know for sure.

Now, if your poor little defenseless computer is fortunate enough to be a simple terminal, it may get off with minor injuries, and you may only be out a few $100. IF, however, you have the full meal deal sitting in front of you and you’re angry enough, I shudder to think of what trauma all concerned could face if you discover the CPU in a fit of hardware induced rage. DO NOT KICK THE TOWER!!!

Just walk away.

Walk away… please. Before you hurt it. Go to the staff room, go to the kitchen, go outside, go get some retail therapy (hopefully you don’t already have to buy new peripherals)… go somewhere! Just don’t kick the tower!! Go somewhere and chill out. Go somewhere and calm the heck down. Go somewhere and regain your composure so you can think clearly. Don’t go back to your computer until you can do that.

Ok. So we’ve had a little fun with the idea of venting on your tools. Fact is, taking your anger out on your computer is no more effective than taking it out on a wall, or a plate, or your car. Don’t get me started on taking your anger out on other people… but the same principle applies. Walk away before you do something you’ll definitely regret.

And then, when you’re calm again, call the IT Manager and handle the issue effectively.

Oh the things we can learn from computers – and 12 year olds.

Make it a calm one…