CharlieMC (charliemc) wrote,

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How Anal Am I? (My Windows Taskbar)

It's cold today. (brr) I feel like going and standing over a furnace vent, the way I used to when I was a child... (smile)

So, the question is: How anal am I?

The answer is: Pretty damn anal, I'm afraid.

Seriously, I fight this tendency, because I don't like to let something so stupid get in the way of getting work done. Yes, I used to be a 'perfectionist' -- which is just a fancy way of saying that I used to let my very anal behavior get in the way of powering through workloads. Trying to make things 'perfect' is basically a big pain, because you can never reach perfection -- and it can really slow you down!

Marilyn mistressmarilyn has also fought perfectionist tendencies, and she's the one who told me years ago that I needed to let it go. Sometimes you have to drop the quality (often just a tiny bit), in order to speed up your production. It was some of the best advice I ever received! Seriously.

Don't get me wrong -- I still like to produce QUALITY work. But now I don't drive myself insane by making my expectations too high.

(Hell, it's clearly working out fine for both Marilyn and me -- considering she's one of the best in the world at what she does, and no, I'm not exaggerating. As for me, I recently received awards for some of my own work, so it's all good...)

Anyway, I've know a lot of other anal people. And that's fine -- EXCEPT when it keeps someone from getting the job done in a timely fashion. By the way, it's also nice if you can manage not to drive everyone around you crazy simply because you're too anal for words! (smile) Thankfully, it's been years since I've personally been that bad. I try to share that advice with others (the way Marilyn shared it with me), but it's not always easy to get people to listen. Anal people tend to cling to being anal -- and I should know, considering I am one!

So, here's a perfect example of how anal I am:

I like to have things open on my Windows Taskbar in a certain order. Unfortunately, Windows hasn't made any way that you can re-order things on the Taskbar. So I'll often close things and open them over again, just to get them back in the order I prefer! Yeah, yeah, it's a stupid waste of time, I know. But I'll find myself hunting for things needlessly, otherwise, so I do tend to be stuck with this.

Or I should say, I USED to be stuck with it!

A couple of days back I discovered Mike Lin's amazing (and simple to use) Taskbar Commander.

After you unzip this, put it somewhere easy to locate (like on the desktop). Then right-click the executable file (Taskbar Commander.exe). Then: Send to > Desktop (create shortcut). Finally, I put the icon in the Quick Launch shortcuts. Now I can click the icon (which resembles and arrow that points up) when I want to re-order items on the Taskbar. Easy, right?

By default, it alphabetizes things, which doesn't work for me. But by simply highlighting something and clicking on the arrows (up or down), you can put any item exactly where you want it! It works like a charm.

I suppose this is another anal behavior I should 'let go' at some point. (smile) But in the meantime it's quick to 'fix' my Taskbar so that I don't need to close everything when items aren't in the 'correct' (for me) order!

You know, I wonder why Microsoft didn't make it easy to do this? What made me want to be able to do it was the simple way I can move a Firefox TAB from one spot to another (to keep these in the order I want -- yes more anal behavior).

A bit of googling took me to Taskbar Commander, for which I'm quite grateful! (I need to go and donate to the 'tip jar' for Mike Lin, considering how much I like this application. Okay, I did that! I didn't send that much, but I suppose every $ helps...)

Give his software a try -- I'm sure you'll like it as much as I do!

Tags: 2008, marilyn, microsoft, november-2008

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