Designing a Well Lived Life: Checking In (February 2020)

Checking in for February for my "Designing a Well-Lived Life" blogging. This is about making small changes during the year to make larger changes.

  • Dropping expectations: I'm not sure I had to consciously do this as much this month, but it could be that I've either dropped the expectations or that my expectations this month were low. I'll need to notice if this happens at all during next month.

  • Physical Health: I've been taking more breaks and getting up from the computer. One day I drank water instead of coffee for the afternoon. I haven't made a concerted plan for this yet. It keeps becoming "not as important" and I'm starting to feel that my let-it-ride philosophy of physical health is going to bite me in the ass soon.

  • Writing more: I've been writing for the Pepper&Carrot RPG and making good progress. I haven't done as much blogging as I would like but I did write more articles this past month. I have been trying a journaling habit where if I want to switch context while focusing that I journal instead about what I'm feeling in that moment. That might prompt more thoughts that I'll want to write about.

  • Programming more: Really feeling stuck on this one. All of my programming has been for work. I'm feeling a bit stagnant in this arena. Part of it is competing priorities (I'd like to learn Rust, and I feel I should take another stab at JavaScript) and part of it is wanting to go deeper into technologies that I think are interesting (I think there's something interesting I can create with Godot). But I feel rather numb to this at the moment. Also I realized that part of my issue is feeling like i need to know everything before I start, which is a common problem that I've dealt with. I'm going to need to work with the idea that I can jump into something and learn as I go. But then the question is "what would I like to create?". I think I need to just sit and play for a bit and get excited about programming again.

  • Mindfulness: I'm finding myself being more mindful, except when I'm not. ;) That's a cheeky way of saying that when I'm focused I'm being more mindful than when I'm scattering my attention all over the place with distractions and what-not.

  • Decluttering: I've made some progress with this. My parents are also decluttering, so I'm finding some intake from them as well. I have a daily repeating task to declutter in certain areas of the house for 10 minutes that I think I need to take more seriously. The main thing is I'm not sure where to start in some of these areas, and I feel blocked because some of the things I want to donate, but it's hard to figure out a time to take these items over to donate. Perhaps I need to do them in small chunks rather than all at once.

  • Deeper work: I made some more progress with this. I've started the journaling habit whenever I get distracted from a task, so that has helped get me back on track. I did notice my propensity to just jump onto Youtube to watch something and then watch several related videos. I think I need to use youtube-dl more to keep my focus only on the video that I want to watch.

  • Getting out of debt: Making progress with this, but slower than I would like. I also found myself making RPG game purchases (I blame part of that on sales, and part of that on my newfound love of the BRP system, and rekindling my love of Fudge). I need to realize that I don't need to find "RPG Methadone" if I don't like a particular system, I can do without. That's a pattern that I've noticed in myself: "I don't like this one thing for this particular reason, let's find alternatives that are similar and fill that need better". I blame part of that on my use of Linux and needing to find alternatives for things that other platforms enjoy. It's not healthy, though it gives me short-term satisfaction.

I also worked on getting my book "The Mediocre Programmer" closer to publication. I found a LaTeX template that looks really good for the PDF. Hoping to make some more traction on that in the coming month.