Try the Easy Way First

I just spent 45 minutes trying to figure out why my Palm wouldn’t sync up to the computer. It worked fine a few days ago. I haven’t changed anything. What’s up with that?

I Googled my question and got some ideas. None worked. Went to the Palm support site and got some more ideas, which sent me back to the Internet for more inquiries, hoping to narrow down the solutions. No help there. Plug it into a different port. Open and close programs. Nada. Back to the Palm site, then some Macintosh help sites. By now I’m kind of irritated.

Okay, I’ll just reset the stupid thing, I decide out of exasperation. Still not working. Might as well restart the computer too. That’s the last trick in my book. Success!

So, what’s the lesson here? Sometimes, it’s not worth discovering what’s wrong if you know a fast way just to solve the problem. I have no clue why the hotsync didn’t work. I’d like to know, but what I’d like more is to be able to get back to work. I need to remind myself to cut to the chase and just solve, or overcome, a problem and let go of my desire to understand it.

Does this happen to you? Do you suddenly realize that you’ve spent an hour troubleshooting instead of circumventing and getting on with it? I think it’s natural to attempt to solve a problem that’s right in front of you, but it’s worthwhile to stop and consider whether you can make progress without actually solving it.

Detour from ngader’s photostream