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Don’t waste your time over optimizing

I learned the hard way yesterday not to waste my time over optimizing.

WordPress recently added a feature called “Site Health”. It listed a few recommendations. I fixed the first two recommendations, but the third was more tricky. It wasn’t something that I could do. I had to contact my webhost. After they added the module it listed, the site had now 4 errors in Site Health.

I took about an hour but I researched and with the site host’s technical support help I fixed the issue. The problem here was partly WordPress and partly mine. WordPress was to blame by having a faulty Site Health indicator. Even though the module was enabled, it didn’t see that it was and still reports it is disabled. The problem that was mine is that this was a minor issue, and I made a mistake in trying to get 100% score instead of being happy with 93%.

Many times in life I have optimized things and caused new problems. I try to live as efficiently as possible and so I always look for ways to reduce costs or improve performance and security. Many times my attempts to accomplish these goals have messed up how things function. To be clear, I only do this in my private life and when it only could affect me I am very curious how things work, so I will do experiments to see if things can improve.

I think the challenge in life is letting things continue the same when they are going well. Too often people take this status quo as a over-applied way of thinking. Every company that I have worked in has had reliability problems because they don’t want to change how things are. They would rather justify wasteful salaries and processes because they don’t want to do the hard work to change things. I like making this efficient, and will go to any length to accomplish this.

So on one hand don’t change things unless you see an improvement. On the other, don’t keep things as they are because your competition does not have that mindset.

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