Thursday, May 22, 2008

The last moment for today..

Numerous thoughts were collected since my last post. And so, I guess that's the primary reason for the existence of this blog. It just comes like this as my thoughts do. Without worrying if anyone finds this boring or believes there is only one reason for blogs, different than this one. I like how it comes alone as it is. And as it comes and goes through parallel yet not identical issues, it happens once again that I have shifted away from the initial reason when I started. If there was any..

The last moment for today. The usual anxiety. How should I exploit the remaining time at best before I go to sleep and then wake up for yet another long day at work. I had this one even when I was jobless and dozens of hours were spent into doing nothing or just being anxious about doing nothing :P. What about now that maybe 5 or 6 hours remain for the rest of my day?

I toss between creativity or relaxation. Creativity is hard. Maybe during the first month in the work I've noticed I was still kinda active as a coder for the remaining hours in the evening at home. But that was only for the first month. It just doesn't happen anymore. Still my activity when I was jobless wasn't better and I didn't even had an excuse then. Relaxation is easier. Usually it's like playing a computer game, surfing on the net, doing other minor things and maybe watching some movie late at night. It leaves me an empty feeling of having accomplished nothing for today. Yesterday I went for creativity though and ended up at night with a code that I am proud of but a sad feeling that my precious relaxation time is over and I have to go back to sleep. Something I have never felt after finishing a good piece of code instead of being tempted to waste my time in another senseless mission on daggerfall (yes, my brand new top favorite game after doom!). Usually I feel like it's worth the time spent..

Sometimes I may decide to go out for a walk in order to avoid this "creativity vs relaxation" dilemma. Sometimes a friend calls and asks me to meet together. I never say no. Until only recently. Twice. Because of the job and the feeling that there are like 5 hours left for myself or my creative hobbies and was very tired to get dressed and go out. Today I had a great mood to start with some CPC code and then maybe go out for the remaining time but I had to stop my work earlier at the peak of my motivation because my friend phoned too early. Timings are not very good, how much if you have a very tight piece of time for yourself and your hobbies..

And now I am back. And I am wondering what I can do to add a little more meaning to this last moment before going to bed. Gaming? Nope. Some TV series? Maybe. Coding? Too late, these things need hours away. Writting something in this blog. Something that came out of my current state of mind. Even something senseless.

And there it is..


Någon said...

It's hard to do something with your time when you know you have 'only' 5 hours and a tousand things you'd like to accomplish in this time. Eventually you end up wasting that time partially because you cannot really decide on one thing and partially because you are in fact tired after whole day of work.

The problem here is that you should look at it in a greater perspective.

Make a plan for the whole week.
Create a list of things you would like to accomplish. Estimate how much time you have. Allocate a fixed piece of that time for most important things on the list. Forget about the ones you don't have time for and keep them for the next week.

Don't forget about entertainment. Make sure that one of the top things on your list is something that gives you opportunity to relax and that you spend some time on entertainment each day.

Also don't try to make this plan too strict. For each task allocate more time than you actually need. Leave time for breaks. Try not to say when you want to do a specific thing but rather how much time you want to spend on it - this will provide more flexibility.

The last but most important thing: make sure that if you have allocated time for something, you are actually doing it. If you have problem with this (like me), it's best to make regular breaks. E.g. every 30 minutes drop everything you are currently doing, no matter how important it is and spend about 5 minutes in a place where you can be alone and think a bit. This way you can look at what you are currently doing from a distance and consider whether it is really the thing you promised yourself you will be doing.

I am now trying to enforce these rules on myself and it seems to be starting to work.

Optimus said...

Well thanks for your suggestions.
I will really think about it for my late evenings. At least if I decide to actually do a plan and accept to follow it. Because myself resists.

But surely it has to be elastic to let myself. And I have to decide some things. Like to try to not see demomaking the way I see it now. Like something vain that I am afraid to waste too much time, it needs dedication especially for a bigger demo and I am afraid to do this anymore. That's why I am thinking of coding something else than demos sometimes and believe I'll be having more motivation with it. But that's another subject..

One other aspect that doesn't motivate me to start is the scale of some projects or when there are plans that push me into doing one particular thing. I could almost do it in the past but today? For example, the last months I followed the approach of either coding small things or something that is not into plan but I get hooked with the idea of coding it one day. This way I have various small codes from unreleased demoeffects and little game or demo or 3d engines to early attempts to try something different (like a game, emulator or something other) which is good but also doesn't always satisfy the release factor. It does it when there is something small to release in the scene. But at least I had fun with these without being anxious about releasing. Now I am talking with some dudes on the MSN about doing a new CPC demos and I am really happy because they are motivated and I know these people, but it's my part now and this project is a bigger scale. It's kinda hard to know that I have to code and code and still not see the fruit of my creations, to finally release the demo. Or have I lost it?

This is what I am trying to fight with. Small code just for fun, but also my need for releasing something. This is a part I will try to think about it. Maybe spend some time for fun coding and specific time of the week for one bigger project that might need months to be released (but it will be only one this time, the larger scale project will be only one or else..)

Also for game relaxation I shouldn't choose daggerfall which keeps me focused for the rest of the day and I forget everything, but something relaxing for like half an hour that also let my thoughts float easilly, like Lotus 3 or another game that does not need to focus too hard into it's world, usually any racing does it for me and it makes my thoughts float easilly while doing it. Well, lotus 3, in my oldschool PC :) (Can't think of some newschool game on PC that would be as relaxing)

And for relaxation, plan some days I will also get out from home ;P

I will take in account your own suggestions and also mine here, my different needs (relaxation/creativity, small/larg scale projects, coding for fun/need to release my fruits) and see how it works.

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