A block and white illstraction of a cross section of topsoil and then underground. There is grass and flowers on top and stones and ropelike rock and starfish-like fossils under the earch.

Alice’s Rabbit Hole, Sandra Strait / CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
Click on the image for the larger original.

Big realisation, I am procrastinating on my other, bigger priorities, with the 100WordHabit project.
Bigger realisation, if not this, I’d find something else.
Biggest revelation, even if life sucks donkey balls, I need to focus, be disciplined and do what needs doing.

So here’s a few stream-of-consciousness observations & suggestions, to future Jason, when doing the project.

  1. The writing almost never takes you that long. You write at a fairly decent clip.
  2. What does take you a lot of time, is that while you do know what to say, you take an inordinately long time, trying to figure out just the right way to say it, to present it.
  3. It’s the rabbit holes that you get into.
    a. You take too long researching, finding just the right image and the right words.
    b. You just spent half an hour trying to figure out the right way, to attribute an image.
    c. You spent another trying to find out how to jump to a specific column in Emacs (M-g followed by tab followed by the column number and return)
    d. You started curating and tagging some mp3s that have being lying around for years now.
    e. then you went and forked the music jukebox library you used on Github
  4. You hate doing the hard stuff.
    a. It makes you really uncomfortable
    b. It makes you want to take breaks
    c. You keep switching to obssessively checking all your feeds.1
    d. You then find something that you just have to learn more about and that leads you into another rabbit hole.
    e. Besides you’re a completionist. All those tabs and notes to self, just have to be read and squirreled away
  5. All of this is taking time away from stuff you really have to do considering your age.
    a. You hardly get time to exercise. Yes life is busy, but you don’t have to make it worse.
    b. The career pivot is going slower due to this.
    c. You don’t have time to execute your diet.

Here’s a few things you could do …

  1. Remember, this is only during your deep work hours. We need to make the most of them. Go nuts when you aren’t working.2
  2. Figure out what your process is. I realise you’re a pantser, but a little bit of outlining will do you no harm. You already have a running list of topics to prevent writer’s block and time waste. You’ve already lowered the bar, to become more consistent. So see what else, you do in your writing process that takes the longest. In fact, what do you do? Will recording yourself help?
  3. (Added, 2024-02-18,) Don’t check your feeds in the mornings. This one’s a huge timesink. You find issues that interest you. Then you go to find someone who speaks with a nuanced voice. Nuanced voices are rare. They’re hard to find! And if you decide to listen to Munger, and go do the work to have an opinion, by trying to find an opposing nuanced voice? That’ll take you even longer. Just STOP! Now is not the time to get better informed. Do it later.
  4. Start clocking times with Org. You want to get a better idea of where the time goes.
    Don’t spend too long reading the manual. Just figure out how to clock in, clock out, get a summary
  5. Set a time block? Posts just have to be published once you hit a hundred words or a hour, whichever is longer? If you still want to continue, do it the next day. The posts could be part one / two / three / blah?
  6. IT DOES NOT HAVE TO BE PERFECT! Be ok with “mediocre”, unstructured posts. This phase will not last long.
  7. Don’t let this take over your life. You already have one vice.

The most important thing though? Kudos to you!
The meditation practice is really paying off in spades. You notice things. And you try and do something about it. You don’t let it bother your present. Most importantly, you don’t let it devolve into self loathing. You’re a lot less stressed, a lot more peaceful and a lot more resilient than you used to be.

a cartoon penguin shaking his fist at a large oncoming wave. the speech bubble quotes Gloria Gaynor,“I will survive!”

courtesy Liniers / Comics Kingdom

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  1. There’s nothing new there, since the last time you checked, you twit! ↩︎

  2. The point is also to make the time ↩︎