Janne Jalkanen talks about the human form of thrashing: ButtUgly: Trashing
You know how computers start trashing when they run out of memory? They just keep hitting the hard drive all over again, trying to swap between tasks, but end up using most of their time moving bits in and out of the memory to the hard drive.
I've come to realize that I do sort of the same thing. When I get tired I start flipping between my email, a document, my web mail, check the stats on my weblog, check new weblog posts, another document, iTunes, news sites, IRC channels... You know - essentially all of the windows that I have open on my desktop.
I can commiserate. Even though I claim to be good at personal time / space / information management, I still run into roadblocks like this. Partially, it's due to lack of interest in what is in front of me. Partially, it's due to lack of direction.
I've found a simple list of priorities for the day, written in pen and ink, to be very effective. It helps me set an outline for the day -- what is important?