It’s time for some free writing. I used to dread these exercises in high-school composition. The main reason being that I was always afraid that the thoughts wouldn’t flow for the entire time set and I’d feel a bit foolish when I had it evaluated by my peers. Yes, peer review is a scary thing at any age!
So, I sat down, set a timer, and just started typing. I think it might be easier to handwrite, but that’s only because my handwriting speed has suffered over the years due to less usage. I really ought to look into more practice there as well. Speaking of hand-writing, I want to pick up a fountain pen again. those actually felt pretty good to write with. Despite my analytical nature, advanced writing classes were a thing for me during the grade school years.
Another thought I had is a bit work-related, and it’s a bit of a view on how technical support should be very useful. I think it’s better being a “guide” for the person seeking help, and not simply taking over and doing some arcane task. It’s a fine line between being a teacher and a friend, looking over the person’s virtual “shoulder”, especially when you can’t be physically present to see what the person you’re helping is struggling with. Sometimes, frustration could be avoided by keeping in mind that role.
I sometimes see signs of a gradual change, sometimes irreversibly, into jaded, minimal help, with less human touches in a response, and more links to documentation. I try encourage bing sparing in giving links unless needed, and only as the “for more information” part of my response, following an explanation or step-by-step instructions, in my own words, if needed.
Well, that’s it, the timer is going off in a few seconds and I’ll be hitting publish soon after. That wasn’t as bad as I remember it.
Go for a 10-minute free-write: have no mercy on your keyboard as you give us your most unfiltered self (feel free to edit later, or just publish as-is).