Deadlines, they loom large over us all. Though not all from the same sources, we all have something that has “time sensitive” stamped across it. And, of course, most of us are horrible at keeping those deadlines. Many a soul has spent a great deal of time procrastinating before eventually getting to work at the last possible minute. College students, especially those with challenging majors, probably suffer a soft form of PTSD from the mere mention of an “all-nighter”. Clearly, humanity was not meant to be on time.
The question then becomes, when you’ve finished your procrastination, can you actually make good on the promise of completing the task on time? Most of us have the ability, when pressed, to get things completed just in time, cutting it close like game of chicken with utter failure. Sure, you may not die, but you probably felt like it along the way.
And that’s when we start pushing the red line. The red line, a term I’m borrowing from cars, is when you’re pushing yourself so far that you’re risking a burn out to get ahead. Cars have an indicator on them that you’re running the engine too hard, a little red line showing you the dangerous zone. Generally, we all know that running the car at that rate for long is going to cause major damage. By default, most of us avoid doing that. But when it comes to ourselves there’s rarely a second thought to push those limits.