Day 716: Countdown to Christmas / New Year’s

One week til Christmas! And two until New Year’s! Putting music together for the holiday radio show, which is putting me in the spirit, and quite frankly a bit stoked about resolutions. My wife and I have our finances more or less on track (tricky, with the recent vet bills), and while we haven’t had the best year for exercise/fitness, we’ve got a lot of tools in the toolbox for positive reinforcement and getting things done. 

So… the countdown’s on! Expect more posts about a new year’s plan in the days to come. 

Day 715: Drawing a Blank

A vacation day from work today, except it’s not, as I have to go into work this afternoon for a meeting. So a vacation… half-day? Except it’s not, as I have to bring the cat to the vet in 90 minutes. So a… day. 

This is going to be a bit of a quick one. Not much on my mind this morning except the vague plan to get some coffee and push into getting some things done between now and the vet, and then between that and going into work for the afternoon. Focusing on rebuilding the Tiniest Gallery, which is chugging away in the background, and then getting some volunteer work done — “retiring” actually requires a fair bit of prep. 

Day 714: Updating

Technology! Our greatest friend. OUR GREATEST FOE. Slept late after going to two parties yesterday, which as a sociable introvert means I had a good time, but am now completely mentally exhausted. I’m great with people, but social stuff really tuckers me out. 

It’s going to be a quiet day today, and a lot of it, it turns out, is gonna be spent on site updates. Lots of small things that have crept in over the last while. 

Doing this kind of thing and maintaining it are often two separate items in my head, which is kind of an interesting division — I have a daily dedication to check in via the podcast, but not any dedicated time to work on the project “meta” — the site, promotion, etc. It’s the classic case of putting myself last — Gretchen Rubin Obliger here — and everything else in my life first. 

All that to say I got a lot of site updating and plugin modification to do… so I’d best get to it, on top of the regular rota of Sunday Get Things Done stuff. Onward! 

Day 713: Insommmniaaaaa

Ehhh, I was trying to find a good clip from the trailer for “Insomnia” but it turns out they don’t really talk that much about insomnia, mainly serial killing. Which is probably a good move, marketing-wise. 

Up since 2, it’s now 5 — this time it’s not even stress, just kind of interesting things rattling around in my head. It’s frustrating to me, and frustrating to my wife — my hope now is that Jerkpod will be a bit of an exorcism and I can grab a couple hours before going to do the radio show. 

700+ days ago I wouldn’t have said “sleep is the problem I must solve!” but I think it is — core motivation, and sleep. Sleep is definitely key! 

Day 712: Back back on track (track)

GOOD sleep last night — so up on time, exercise, doing this, took care of some holiday stuff. A good morning so far! And progress yesterday at detaching from the major volunteer gig. 

It’s hard handing things off, in a way — this is a genuine thing that happens called “founder’s syndrome,” where non-profits, charities, etc. get pulled into a sinkhole because somebody starts to feel like the organization — or a component — is theirs. They’ve put a lot of time and passion into it, and get super proprietary. It’s understandable, but detrimental. 

The anxiety over letting it go is healthy — it’s definitely something I feel strongly about and have put a lot into — but there comes a point where you have to trust the health of the organization, hand things off, and realize that you don’t own the thing, the community does. 

Day 711: Sleep Is Key!!!

We know this already! But now that I’m typing this (after another REALLY BAD SLEEP HAS DESTROYED ME) night, I realize that it’s not true.


G_D volunteer stress kept me up all night, even though I’m doing things, productive things, to alleviate it. I should have been able to sleep, but my perverse dumb anxiety brain seizes opportunities to keep me awake. 

Dumb brain! 

So once again I’m in a bit of a scramble to the door, which is aggravating. I feel a bit cheated: I’m taking the positive steps and making the positive moves, but now I’m stressed about those steps, which seems like my brain is now just being a jerk for no real reason. 

Genuinely excited to get back on exercise tomorrow after a (hopefully) good night of sleep tonight. I’d be surprised if I’ve taken sleeping pills more than 20 times in the last 711 days, but I think tonight might be one of those times. 

Day 710: Cyclical

Got up at 4:00 (wife has an early shift), drank water, exercised, fed the cats, made coffee. Business as usual, or it should be! 

Those of you who have been along for the ride for a while probably know that I’m happy to be back on track. The interesting question is “…but for how long“. 

I’ve been bad about daily tracking for QUITE A WHILE — yikes, September — and it has NOT GONE WELL in the interim, weight and exercise while. So time to dust that off. 

Paradoxically, while I find doing lots of this stuff tends to make me less keen on doing this stuff, the only answer I can think of is MORE JOURNALING. Really getting into that comment column in the tracking sheet. Here’s what I can see from previous breaks: 

  • Work business/stress
  • Bad diet leads to breakdown
  • Bad sleep (probably from above) leads to breakdown

It’s not very conclusive, though. I feel like something a bit more “diary-ish”, like the one-sentence journal approach, might be helpful. 

Today, though, getting the jump on the new year’s resolution by getting back on the water/exercise/food tracking track. 

Day 709: The Big Why

This has been something I’ve been mulling over since it came up a few days ago — why bother? Not in like a crazy depressed way, but is there some core piece of motivation that I should be looping into here?

My wife has a pretty key thing that she brought up on Saturday: she works in the hospital system, and sees what happens to (a) the destitute and (b) the infirm. So her motivation for exercise and good financial practices is… well, terror. Seeing what happens to people who get older and haven’t taken care of themselves. Seeing what happens to people who don’t have family to tend to them in their old age, especially if they’re effectively destitute. 

And yes, things happen regardless. But putting all the odds in your favour is a good idea. As motivators go, I don’t know how “mortal fear” pans out, but when you have the stark evidence of what can go wrong in front of you, doing better suddenly makes a whole lot of sense. 

It’s not an entirely satisfying answer, but it’s a good start. Mortal terror! That’ll do until the real motivation kicks in. 

Day 708: Back to Bed!

It’s a vacation day from work — practically mandated, as you have to use ’em all by the end of the calendar year. Policy! So it’s a get-things-done today, but first? 

I’m going back to bed. 

I love sleep! What can I tell you? My wife and I have actually had an are we depressed? conversation about it just to be sure. But… nah. I’m feelin’ pretty good. I just really like sleeping. I think I’m naturally a nine-hour guy, but rarely get nine hours, and naps and the occasional big rest are a way of compensating for that. 

A couple of major vacation day projects coming up, but first… back to bed! Hooray! Sleep. 

Day 707: Get-Things-Done-Day

Sunday’s our traditional prepare for the week day: lots of food prep, some house cleaning, grocery shopping and all that good stuff. And some days, frankly, you just don’t feel like doing  all that good stuff. But you gotta. It’s gotta get done. 

So it’s a “gird your loins” sort of morning for me right now: small breakfast, slug of coffee, and shove aside the general desire to be lazy in favour of doing Future Me some favours. 

Room for some fun in there too, of course. 

Oh! And I’ve decided, coming out of the holiday experience, to try to keep Sundays device-free. This is strictly me; I’m not obliging my wife to do anything like that, and haven’t been very “pure” about it myself so far this morning — it’s kind of a late-breaking idea. But here we go!