The Art of Doing Nothing (Only really Something)

I’ve come to decide upon another very important resolution. It’s regarding video games, mostly.

In the Little Over A Year that I’ve been working at my job, I’ve fallen into an unfortunate habit of not getting stuff done in my personal life. My hours are late, and while it means I get to sleep in, it means I get a lot less home time. It’s a fun job, and I actually love it so much, I often stay later just to hang out with co-workers, meaning if I have not eaten with them in our hang-outs, I basically get home in enough time to shovel dinner in my mouth, go right to bed, and get the mulligrubs.

I suppose I could get up early, but Morning Lauren is completely unreasonable. And, as I realized today in the elevator to my car, this is the first job where I haven’t felt exhausted all day and just spent my worktime daydreaming about coming home and taking a nap. I could have gone to bed at 8:00 PM, but a job that required me to wake up at 6:00 AM invariably meant I usually wouldn’t actually be alert and productive until about 3:00 PM. Gotta face that I’m a Night Owl. Better than being a Rorschach.

So, working my hours and getting a good night’s rest leaves precious little time for things I love doing, namely: playing video games, reading good books, and reading pointless magazines while watching pointless television. Not to mention the things I need to do, namely: work out, write thank-you notes for various things, clean various dishes and clothing, and plan various weddings. Okay, just the one, but it’s enough! And while I’m on the subject, I am literally SHOCKED that more marriages don’t last forever, because if two people can make it through the wedding process, they should be able to make it through ANYTHING.

So, I have implemented a new plan into my home life, and I’m eager to see how long I can keep it up (Goal: forever). I borrowed the plan from my work life, which, like any job, requires a certain amount of undesirable tasks to be mixed into the fun ones. The secret is to spend an hour on each task and then move to the next thing. If you’re not finished with the first, do something else that needs to be done, and come back to it.

And one hour goes by fast! Back before I could perceive numeric time/was dumb, my mom used to describe the length of plane trips in terms of my favorite TV shows. So an hour-and-a-half flight was one “Sesame Street” and a “Mr. Rogers.” A four-hour flight was 8 “Strawberry Shortcakes,” ZOMG, is anything better than 8 Strawberry Shortcakes?! I submit that there is NOT. This is still a method of optimism for me today, because who WOULDN’T want to be stuck in traffic for a “House” and two “Modern Family”s? That sounds GREAT!

So! I have 3 video games that I’m “playing” right now. Dragon Age, where I believe I’m 1/3 finished, Final Fantasy 13, where I either just finished the walkthrough or I’m almost done, and Bioshock, which Tyler just got me for Christmas, because won’t it be funny to watch Lauren scream and whimper for a while. I have a few books to read, one of which includes my friend AunJuli’s NaNoWriMo novel, and some others for book club, leisure, or I bought it, and I’m finishing it, damn it! And I have a few other things mixed in that can’t possibly be done all at once [working out enough to fit into a wedding dress (I suppose I *could* try losing 20 pounds in a day, but I may have to sell off some necessary internal organs)], or if I try to do them one at a time, my eyes will dry out and fall out of my head (writing thank-you notes for Christmas and wedding showers and, er, sending out the rest of my Christmas cards. I bought them, and I’m finishing them, damn it!)

The first 3 days of 2011 have been a win in this regard, and the timer on my phone helps me regulate my time spent on each task. (AND since I don’t have an iPhone, the alarm actually WORKS! BAZINGA! Ahem.) Sometimes it’s a reward when the alarm sounds, and sometimes it seems over too soon, but I’ve felt so productive at the end of every day so far, it all seems worth it. What about you guys? What motivates you to come home from work and do something other than collapse in a recliner and pet a cat for 3 “House”s straight?

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