Sunday, November 17, 2013

The Productivity Hole

Somehow, it is November of 2013. I'll be 26 in February and I don't know how I feel about that. This year is almost over and the days are shortening rapidly. Despite the fact that the time that the sun sets has no bearing on what time I have to go to bed, I find myself operating with a certain sense of urgency, and I have had a hard time leaving room for creativity these past few weeks. I have had trouble writing, not because I actually don't have time, but because I am bored with my own thoughts. I think because I am officially no longer in my early 20s I'm starting to suffer from impostor syndrome in regards to my own adulthood. The amount of time I spent yesterday just THINKING about how I wanted to organize my closet was more than it typically takes me to write one of my longer entries. I haven't even started actually doing it. Granted this is a walk-in closet, WHICH I HAVE NEVER HAD BEFORE, and figuring out how to best utilize the space is actually quite exciting. It is not, however, interesting to write about. If I were skilled at the art of writing about things like closet organization then I would have a job writing for Real Simple magazine and my life would be very different. But I digress.

 Other than showing up to work on time and paying my bills, I actually don't have a whole lot of expectations to live up to. I am obsessively punctual and I am just the right amount of lower middle class that I am doing just fine but I don't have to spend much time worrying about what I'm going to "do with my money". I strive to be a good friend, but I seem to have accumulated a group of friends who are all either in relationships or are simply low maintenance. Also I haven't been in the city that long and I've changed jobs a few times so most of my friends are relatively new friends who have other, older friends to handle their more complicated friend needs. Other than the pleasure of my company (I'm delightful) no one seems to particularly NEED anything from me on a regular basis. I am fine with this, but I tend to get anxious in the absence of external responsibility so I bestow upon myself a set of tasks to be completed with the idea that once I have completed these tasks my lifestyle will be tidier and more respectable.

I tend to prioritize things like closet organization and laundry and errand running over more nebulous goals like visiting new neighborhoods and researching their history. This is problematic, because the former are things which all impact only the very smallest details of my everyday life, whereas expanding my own world of experience and sharing it in writing is actually an undertaking which could potentially impact the course of my life, and at the very least keep some of you jerks entertained for 5 minutes. Despite my efforts, though, I can't seem to escape the burden of productivity in it's most boring form.

Once I organize the closet then it will always be easy to keep organized and I will have more time in the future to go exploring and focus on my writing, I think. This is not true. As much as I often convince myself that sacrificing one day off for the good of future days off is reasonable, I always eventually remember that something will always come up, and leaving time for activities that do not fit under the heading of "productive" needs to be a daily endeavor. Since I fancy myself a writer, having new experiences actually is something I need to focus on. Otherwise I will have nothing to write about. I can only post so many entries like this one before everyone is going to call my bullshit.

Although harping on my time management skills is exactly the kind of creativity vacuum that I try to avoid, I realize that I need to be a bit more vigilant in holding myself to a schedule  so I can go explore the city, write about it, and still have time to work out and grocery shop regularly and make homemade meals and deal with my closet. If I fail to get to the mundane things, then I won't be able to enjoy the enlightening things going forward. This time of year it can be tempting to put off self-improvement because the New Year is coming up. Making New Years Resolutions is a very destructive habit for this reason, and this year I am actually going to try to start tweaking my habits now. Tomorrow will be a good day.