There'll be a change in the weather,
a change in the sea;
before long there'll be a change in me...
—Benny Goodman & His Orchestra, "There'll Be Some Changes Made"
I'm not real pleased with how a few things in my life are going just now, so it's time to fix them. Some of it can be easily explained as side effects of The Annual Summer Slump, but even with that, a lot of it is simply bad choices. And it's not like everything I'm doing currently is negative — I did join (and start actually going to, an important detail) a health club, for instance, which is a long-needed move in the right direction. So, posted here mostly as a note to myself, are some changes I'm working on:
- Go to bed on time. This is partially the summer: even when I get 8 hours a night, I still wake up groggy and unmotivated, so it makes it harder to force myself to go to bed at night. But 11:00-11:30 has drifted to 1:00-1:30, and last night it was 2:30 when I went up and 3:00 when I actually got in bed. Not good. Even with stolen naps in the afternoon, this has gotta change.
- Clear up the clutter. My desk gets cluttered; that's a fact of my psyche. But there comes a point when it starts to bug even me, and I've reached it. So it's time to start puttin' crap away — or in some cases, throwin' crap away.
- Pay attention at work. On top of my usual summer blahs, I'm also somewhat burnt out on the whole "web development" front, and my work is suffering for it. Now, I'm fairly mercenary about the day job — its two main purposes are to a) pay the bills, and b) stay out of my way. But even so, I have been falling into a severe "coast and avoid work" mode, and as I always find that distasteful in others, I can't let myself keep going down that road.
- Get moving on something — anything — creative. The summer blahs and lack of sleep conspire to make me want to just come home and go "plop" in front of the computer, because it doesn't take any creative energy or meaningful thought ... I just push buttons. And with the nature of computer games being what it is, it's easy to make artificial achievements ("Congratulations! You just killed 200 nonexistent orcs. Don't you feel special?") and therefore get something approximating the feel of an accomplishment, even if you know in your heart of hearts that it's bullshit. To that end, it's the most "efficient" way of getting some personal satisfaction, i.e., the least possible effort to produce some kind of result. This is why it's such an alluring trap for some, and one that I'm prone to fall into during my practically-zero-energy phases. But for me at least, it's not sustainable, like living on those orange foamy circus peanuts: eventually my soul starts craving some proper nourishment. And eventually, I start thinking about all the hours of my life I'll never get back again that I spent doing it, and the things I could have achieved if I'd been doing stuff in the real world instead of fake ones, and getting kinda disgusted by it. Play and recreation are necessary, but they are only a part of a good life.
Speaking of all of which, I need to get to work.