# # Don’t expect any wisdom from this entry. It’s just me… Ranting… ##

Every once in a while, I will cancel meetings on short notice. I do that when I just can’t process more information.

I don’t do it very often, but every time I do, I feel like I’m going to piss everyone off. The exact opposite actually happens. I get a small handful of e-mails that say thank you and more often than not an offer to reschedule when I’m firing on all cylinders.


I can’t help but wonder if the same goes for everything in life. There’s only so much bandwidth and people hate when you don’t bring your A game.


Our mental bandwidth, emotional bandwidth, social bandwidth and our time all have hard limits as far as I’m concerned.

It seems obvious but in the past I didn’t consciously think about it very often.

A few examples:

  • Mentally, it’s really hard to solve creative and complex problems when you’re buried under a minutia of robot-like work.
  • Emotionally, if some random stranger is screaming at you about a blog you wrote last week, it is really hard to work through the conversation you are having via text at the same time with a level head.
  • Socially, you can only have one conversation at once. You only have one set of ears, one mouth and one brain. If you’re going to optimize, use them all at once and don’t split the tasks.

Throw the stress of real life into any situation and things can get out of hand in a hurry and I keep coming back to it being related to managing my own bandwidth.

Notice that I did not say money. Money is finite, sure, but there is a lot floating around. The minutes in the day, your sanity and the calm you carry with you cannot be acquired anywhere. No one else can give that to you.

Now, please do not read that and go all nihilist on me and start burning money because you believe it is worthless. That’s not the case. Money is a precious resource.

The time you put into any problem, relationship, solution, company, idea, or dinner is not recoverable. Money will be made and lost.


There is only so much time to go around. You should be careful what you do with it.

I’ve never believed in a work+home balance, but I do believe in bandwidth and your ability to put it toward whatever you want to be doing across the board. There is just life and a general understanding of your own limitations.

Lately that limitation has hit me like a ton of bricks.

I’m not sure many women/men are limited in terms of potential at work+home, but I am pondering lately whether life has more to do with optimizing your bandwidth to accomplish the things you want to rather than taking on as much as you can.

At home or at work.

If everyone was the philosophical equivalent of a Mack truck who could just haul more shit than the average vehicle, we’d all just pile it on until we have to replace a wheel. We all know people don’t work like that though.

We break.

Knowing what not to do or what project not to take on is probably more valuable than trying to make sure you never sleep when taking on the world in whatever capacity you may be attempting to.


Not everything is replaceable or renewable. Allocate your bandwidth accordingly and when you recognize that you need to make a change, make one.


5 thoughts on “Bandwidth”

  1. Agree 100% Ben. So much of life – whether business or personal – is prioritizing. Inevitably those things toward the bottom of the list may not get done – ever. And that’s okay. How many people at the end of their lives regret spending too much time with the people and things they love?

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