Tuesday, November 08, 2011


And just when it hit me
Somebody turned around and shouted
“Play that funky music, white boy!”

--Wild Cherry

Actually, that’s not the sort of funk I meant, my sense of humor just got the better of me this morning. But the fact that my sense of humor has returned is a good sign. I’ve been, as my mother put it, in a funk for the last several months. First I needed to wind down from ISDC, then I found that I was too wound down. Aimless. Listless. Bored. Turns out I’m one of those people who needs projects to keep him focused and energized.

So around November 1, just as I was starting in on NaNoWriMo, I got a phone call from my buddy Darlene saying that an event we’d been planning to do the first week in December was going to move to November 11. “No sweat,” says the Gopher, and off he goes to do a month’s worth of work in a day or two. And the sad part is, I like it that way. I’ve been setting aside 8-10 p.m. every night to write the novel, which constrains the time available to do SciCheer stuff. That keeps me focused and task-oriented, while giving me designated time to be creative, which suits me just fine.

I work better under pressure.

Keeping busy improves my mental alertness, focus, and mood. I don’t know if that means I’m a workaholic, but it does mean I need to keep my mind stimulated with specific projects and tasks, preferably tasks with a deadline (it also might explain why going on a vacation to "do nothing" is foreign to me). Give me a routine task that needs to be performed every day/week/month, and I’ll do it, but eventually it will fall under the heading of a chore. Give me something unique or creative to do, give me a deadline for doing it, and the brain goes into high-efficiency mode.

The down side of this behavior is that it is very difficult to motivate myself for “non-project” activities--any non-project activities.

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