Designing a Well Lived Life: Checking In (August 2022)

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

(I'm checking in slightly early this month because this week is pretty much shot for me with appointments and what-not, and I wanted to get these out sooner than later).

  • Focus on health (exercise, eating, stress): I've been eating a lot of snacks this month. For some reason my normally sedate sweet tooth went completely overboard. I'm not sure why (perhaps it was seeking comfort) but my snacking reflected this. Also doesn't help that I have replaced my inability to drink alcohol with ginger beer. Stress-wise I have been practicing with removing stuff from my lists so I can focus better.

  • Complete my game design projects to allow others to enjoy them: Made little progress with this. I did think deeply about what I wanted to do for the Phosphors in the Dark game, but it hasn't manifested in anything concrete yet. I realized I was starting to have energy around my game design projects but right now that energy has waned in favor of other things like decluttering so I can give these projects more of the attention they deserve.

  • Do more non-work programming and chase my "white whales": No progress on this. Part of it is my energy returning and part of it is competition between these and my game design. Thinking I need to focus on one particular thing and give it my full attention. That and I need to choose which "white whale" is the most important and focus on that. More to come on this.

  • Be more mindful and focused in my day-to-day activities: I gave this attention this month by trying not to multi-task and give each project the attention it needs. It's hard because I find myself flitting away from each task when I have some down-time (waiting for things to finish) and want to fill that time with other activities. It doesn't help that I've ingrained this habit over dozens of years of being on a multitasking operating system. This is still an area of focus for me.

  • Add more joy into my life, either with games, reading, or other relaxing activities: Been reading more. I've even removed a lot of my audiobooks in favor of reading the books instead. More practice on this.

  • Allow myself to do more with less (distractions, acquisition, commitments, etc.): I gave this a lot of attention this month. I've been reading "The Power of Less" and realizing that I've been acquiring a lot without necessarily enjoying it. That's part exuberance for discovering something new and part replacing something that I've removed with something else in its place. Need to practice with not acquiring as much and removing the non-essential without needing to replace it.

  • Notice when I'm overwhelmed and let go as much as I can: This is a constant push / pull for me, but having it where I'm not as overloaded with tasks has helped considerably.

  • Declutter: Made some huge progress with this in decluttering games we'll never play and books that I'm not about to read anytime soon. I actually cleared out a small bookshelf and made space for the books that I still want to keep. Also moved several items from my office into a box. This is going to be a continual culling process.

  • Continue removing debt: Still progressing with this. I've been going overboard with spending as of late but my challenge in September will hopefully help me not purchase as much non-essential stuff (or any, if I'm being true to the challenge). More to come on this.

It feels like this month was littered with challenges for me to remake myself with less distractions, less clutter, and more time for working on the things that matter. Unfortunately I'm still having trouble with working on my game projects. I'm feeling a bit stuck on them. Hopefully by clearing away commitments I can make more space to not only work on designing these games but actually play the games that I have which help me to gain more ideas. Will keep practicing with these in the coming months.