Do The Hard Thing First
With a blog named QueerJoe, this post title might be a bit misleading. But one of the best pieces of advice I ever got for organizing my day was to do the hard thing first.
The Hard Thing
As a consultant working for a large Accounting/Consulting firm, we were always required to prove ongoing education in our field. Continuing Professional Education (CPE) credits were often earned by taking on-line courses in varying topics. One of those courses I took years ago was about organizing my workday. Creating, and organizing a to-do list was a big part of it. Not a very useful course, except for one piece of great advice. Each day, pick the most difficult task on the list and do that first.
Instead of avoiding hard tasks and bemoaning how difficult they will be, it’s best to just get it off the list quickly!
I didn’t alway follow this advice in my professional life. But when I did, I found that the worries about how painful the task would be were often overblown once I completed it.
This advice came in useful last week. I mentioned I had an urge I had to do a double-knitting scarf by Alasdair Post-Quinn (Fallingblox Designs). The design is Parallax 3.0. I purchased and downloaded the 37 page PDF file and printed about 12 pages of information I would need.
- I realized quickly, I would need to learn a few more knitting skills:
- Two-color cast-on (Alasdair’s method)
- Double-Knitting edge selvage
- Anchoring a third yarn color at the beginning and end of each row
- Internal stranding of unused yarn color in a three-color double-knit pattern
As I started considering each of these things, my mind kept screaming. “Just work on the Ensign Brook DK Cardigan!” But no, I persevered. I read through all the cast-on instructions. I couldn’t figure it out. So I looked for tutorials and none I could find were like Alasdair’s method. So I re-read the instructions. Figuring out what I was misreading, I was able to cast on and knit the first four rows of Parallax!
I can’t tell you how proud I am to have created a very nice, two-color cast-on edge, but also to have created a half an inch of two-color fabric.
I rewarded myself with working on the Ensign Brook DK Cardigan!
Up to about 7 inches on the cardigan.
I have put in two pocket-linings and will add the edging later. I’m loving working with these undyed wools. The stitch pattern will also work out well. It’s going to create a nice fabric with a little structure and just the right amount of drape.
2 comments on “Do The Hard Thing First”
That quite a fete, I think that going to be a really nice scarf. I bet it did feel great to figure that out !!! I agree with you about the colors of the cardigan. It’s really nice, very neat. My mom use to say if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again!
I once made a double knit, two color scarf in an argyle pattern. What you have embarked on is the next level. Best of luck!