When To Say, “Fuck It”

I am a big fan of planning. I’m the type of person, who if faced with errands at three different places, I will actually spend time considering which is the best, most efficient order for me to do them in. In fact, I have to bite my tongue with people who do not plan their time the same way. Because really? How important is it to design a route that minimizes left hand turns against traffic?

(I despise crossing against traffic. I don’t trust anyone to a) actually notice me and b) take appropriate action. People are too busy sneaking glances at their phones. And most people can’t drive anyway. /rant.)

I am also the type of person who isn’t really comfortable with choosing something without, mentally at least, exhausting all possible options. In Gretchen Rubin terms, this makes me a maximizer as opposed to a satisficer. 

When to Say Fuck It - Title

Fuck It Situation 1: Decision Trees from Hell

My business partner and I were talking about resource allocation yesterday, and it quickly became apparent we didn’t have enough information to make a decision. How did we know this? Because of all the if/then statements that kept popping up. If this happens, then we’ll do that; if this turns out to be the case, we’ll do that. At this point, all you can do is make an exhaustive list of all the things you need to find out to collapse some decisions on the decision tree. And then say, “Fuck it,” and quit wasting time chit-chatting and go find out what you need to know.

Fuck It Situation 2: There Is No Down Side

I call this the Pizza-or-Wings conundrum. As in, “What should I have, pizza, or wings?” Seriously, this calls for a “Fuck it.” Decide on impulse. The harder this is, the more you should do it. This is also the case in online shopping when you can’t decide between Product A or Product B. Fuck it. Order them both, then send back the one that didn’t work out. Don’t be wasting valuable brain power on this.

Fuck It Situation 3: It’s Not Your Problem

When to Say Fuck It- graphic from Favim.com

This is probably the most problematic of the bunch, because I, for one, react badly to drama and disharmony in my environment. I want to fix it because, damn it, all this drama is harshing my mellow. But you’ve got to ask yourself this crucial question: Can I fix this problem? This includes but is not limited to, are the other people involved amenable to solving this problem. It would seem obvious, but a lot of the time sometimes people are involved in drama because that’s the way they like things. Other times, the problem is just an effect of a fundamental aspect of who they are. You can’t fix it, and it isn’t your problem to fix anyway. So just say, “Fuck it,” and go about your business. Life’s too short, you know?

Your Turn:

What’s your rule of thumb for saying “Fuck it,” or when do you need to say it more often? Also, are you an maximizer or a satisficer?

9 thoughts on “When To Say, “Fuck It””

  1. I gotta battle HARD against my optimizer tendencies. Like picking a logo, header image, copy writing and more for my new website. 🙂  Don’t ask me how long it took…I’d be embarrassed to say. And that doesn’t even include split testing stuff.
    I have gotten better over the past year or so though. Before, “F it” wasn’t even an option. Now, at least I consider saying “F it” before dipping back into optimizing.
    To me this comes down to being concise. Concise in thought, concise in decision-making, concise in communication. I’m just not a concise guy. But with the help of some key friends, I’m getting better.

    1.  @joeyjoejoe
      Hey, joey ~ yaknow, “just not a concise guy” is Perfectly Okay! Yer not broken.  Me neither, in some things, and extremely so in others. My ‘graphics-brain’ is *incredibly* – painfully, even – precise, down to fractions of millimeters (no kidding) and I’ve learned to recognize when she’s being truly useful, and when she’s mostly getting in the way.We’ve learned to compromise and cooperate, and life is much less painful these days! 🙂

    2.  @joeyjoejoe Don’t get me wrong, I am a huge fan of split testing and optimization– it’s just that the difference between a pretty good sandwich and an optimized sandwich is not that big, and hence not worth wasting brain cells on. The difference between pretty good copy and optimized copy is substantial, and it’s worth spending time on.
      Concise is an interesting word for it. I would not consider myself a concise person at all (my posts average 800 wds) but I am fairly skilled about decision-making, and you’re right, there’s a certain concision of thought that keeps you from getting lost in the details.

      1.  @Shanna Mann  @joeyjoejoe 
        “brief, yet including all important information” ~ Wiktionary
        Well, when you’re trail-blazing (or map-making for your newly blazed trail) it may be more important to include the tiny details (adverbs, adjectives, side-notes and story-telling) so that folks can follow your thinking (or feeling), whether they’re familiar with the territory or not.
        What constitutes “Concise” varies according to context – especially, what one is trying to accomplish and who the expected audience is.
        “Concise” also doesn’t necessarily include “rapid” – it’s harder to write “short but pithy” than to write verbose and rambling.

  2. I’m happy to report that I’m paying more-better attention to my Inner Fuck It, these days. 🙂
    I’m blatantly an Optimizer – the term “Over-thinking” may have been coined to describe my MO!
    I don’t worry so much about ‘turning across traffic’, but “make every trip count” and “reduce your fuel use by combining errands” dictates from the First Energy Crisis (1970’s) definitely imprinted themselves!
    #3 has been much easier for me to grasp and put into practice – I wish more people would recognize one or another of these points, and just say their own “Fuck It!”
    Bright Blessings ~  Karen

  3. Fellow left-turn-in-traffic hater here! I plan my errands around those, too.
    I really like everything to be perfect, but I often have trouble figuring out how to make it that way. So, I spend time agonizing over the details when really I should probably say “Fuck it” and move on to something a little bigger-picture. Every so often, there will be a situation or a relationship I’ve poured so much time and energy into that just isn’t working even a little bit — eventually I’ll say “Fuck it” to that, too. But in general, that’s a phrase I should probably say more often.
    As for satisficer vs. optimizer: In most cases (giant things like finding a place to live aside), I’m the former who prefers decisions made by the latter. I don’t have the patience to comb through a zillion flight options for a trip, but I’m happy to let my husband do it and will happily go along with whatever optimal plan he comes up with. 🙂

    1.  @remadebyhand I think pulling out to the bigger picture is an ideal way to know when to say fuck it. Somehow, one just has to get in the habit of *doing* that pull-back. 🙂
      I’m happy you like it when your husband plans. Some satisficers don’t like planning, and that always causes problems.

      1.  @Shanna Mann Yes…that’s a habit I’m working on. I have to learn to balance pulling back with actually getting the stuff done that I need to do!
        I don’t mind my husband planning if he does it away from me. It’s nice, because we end up with some great deals and such. If I have to sit there while he looks through 8 million flight options, I get fidgety and bored. I’d rather he just tell me which one is best 🙂

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