Day 600: Six Hundred Days at an Ebb

Another non-milestone; this is not the way I thought I’d hit 600 days of this thing. I’m finding out a lot about myself, though — some of it good, and some of it not so great.

When I’m on, I’m on. But there aren’t a lot of half-measures in my life.

I’m aspirational but not practical in weight loss and exercise goals.

I run hot and cold.

I definitely cycle through highs and lows. Not like “seek medication” cycle, but they’re there.

I have a radically growing propensity to crippling insomnia.

Last night’s sleep was pretty good, actually, but thanks to this natural valerian stuff my wife got; I slept well except for about 30 minutes, but am groggy as heck this morning.

Day 492: A Bit Bored

As mentioned before on the podcast, I’m getting a bit fatigued by this format — there’s nothing wrong with it, but I feel like I often don’t have much to say. But I don’t have the time to really remodel it the way I’d like, either. I was originally thinking of the Big Revamp around Episode 500, but I’ve extended that deadline.

And right now, things are… fine! Not on all cylinders all the time, but pretty good across the board. Major life issues are pretty much confined to 4 a.m. wakeups, making time for the foster cat, and being sure I’m on top of schoolwork now that I’m taking courses again (Law 205/705, Public & Constitutional Law, this time around).

Volunteer stuff is super busy, as is the regular job. My wife has a similar dilemma right now: she doesn’t feel like she’s making progress with her passion work, because her job-job takes a lot of energy. It’s priorities, right? I don’t make time to work on this because I’m doing volunteer things, or what normal hu-mans call “re-lax-eeng” in my non-work hours. I feel like it’s gonna shake itself out. Or not.

Day 438: A lacklustre week!

It’s a pretty mediocre week for this podcast! I blame Daylight Savings — sleep is messed up, and exercise has been pretty lacklustre, and this podcast is FRANKLY UNINSPIRED.

Maybe a good time to catch up on some other things — I’m currently distancing myself from some volunteer responsibilities, and trying to normalize some other ones to free up some mental space, both for self-care, this podcast, and the long-neglected side hustle.

Mainly, work’s been busy. It’s always busy, but we’re in a particularly intense period from now through April, and it’s definitely taking… “taking a toll” sounds pretty scary, and it’s not really a scary situation. But my energy after work is low. I’m happy to just watch TV or read or something in the evenings.

My mornings are pretty ambitious. My evenings… less so. Is it age? Is it just general business? Is it being a bit burnt out from a pretty aggressive work schedule? Who knows?

At any rate, apologies for a fairly bland week of the podcast. I know what I have to do to fix it, I’m just not quite finding the drive.

Day 208: Slightly Less Bored With Myself

Okay, so I’ve established that I need to break old patterns or I’ll drive myself crazy. And this seems to be working, at least in terms of having a few good days under my belt. I’m slightly less bored with myself.

So “not going crazy” is probably the best motivation I’ve found so far. Noted. But how do I find goals I care about to target? “Don’t go crazy” is compelling, but it’d be nice to not go crazy toward something.

“Lose weight for better health and to look better” is clearly not working out for me. At least, it hasn’t to date. I’m grinding some progress, yes, but it’s grinding. It’s not a “woo-hoo” goal, it’s a “fine, let’s grind” goal.

I guess I’m just not that vain. And I feel… okay healthy. Virtuous enough with the sobriety and proximity to veganism. So I don’t really feel driven to get much fitter. Would I like clothes to fit better? Sure. Would I like to be healthier? Sure. Do I feel pressure to make that change? Nah.

So there’s gotta be a different key to exercise/diet than that standard-issue thing. Or maybe I just need to set targets without worrying so much about goals.

It’s weird! I should care! I should feel an immense societal burden to be fit and handsome! But I’m a middle-aged dude and I run a lot. I can do 20 pushups without barfing. I feel like I’m in the top 50 percentile for fitness among people my age, and I don’t care enough to strive for top 10% or whatever.

So maybe I need to do less “this is my deep motivation” and more “I bet I can do X” in terms of keeping myself interested. Less soul-searching and more tweaking just for fun.

I’m going to mull this over a bit… I’ve heard that profound motivation is key my whole life. But when I’m not profoundly motivated, maybe there’s a different trigger?

Day 207: Still bored with myself

Mom said there’d be days like this. Well, she didn’t, really. “Son, in the future, there will be this thing called the Internet, and this thing called podcasts, which are like radio but not, and…”. If mom had that kind of prescience, my life would be very different now.

But had mom been that prescient, she would have told me there’d be days like this. It’s rainy outside, and I’m mopey inside. Good 13k run, but I need a kick in the pants to get me back on track.

As I started thinking about yesterday, this project might be that kick. Specifically, being bored with myself might be it.

Bear with me as I over think this. I started this to be publicly accountable, and to kind of chronicle where I’m at with this whole thing. But the accounting is becoming the thing. It might be the keeping of the record that motivates the success of the project.

So it’s all very quantum and Schrodingery. The state of observing this experiment is changing the experiment.

At any rate — it’s been a bad week or so in terms of staying on track. And I’m tired of repeating the same things about “I need to get on this” and “I need to get motivated.” So unless I quit this, which I don’t intend to, my sheer boredom with myself is going to start galvanizing some change.

And that’s weird. At least to me.

Maybe it’s not weird at all. Maybe this is normal for diarists and journal writers: they instigate change in their lives, just to have something to write about. That’s never been a reason to keep a journal that I’ve heard; it’s all reflective blah blah blah contemplation yar bar bar gratitude flee gee gee. But maybe the reason to keep a journal is to make yourself so sick of yourself that you become cool. Just to have an interesting journal.

Food for thought.


Day 206: Bored With Myself

Hm. Okay. I didn’t expect this to be a thing when I started this.

I’ve been kind of bad about things for the past while, juggling some responsibilities. And I’m pretty okay with that.

But now I feel like I need to start making strides because I’m running out of stuff to say here.

I’ve got a lot of motivations for improvement. I need to lose weight for arthritis reasons, now, among other things. I don’t think I’ve really internalized that quite yet.

And there are literally hundreds of other good reasons to be, well, good.

But I’m getting bored with myself, which is kind of a powerful motivation. One I didn’t see coming.

So I don’t feel bad. I’ve got a lot going on, things are getting shifted around to accommodate. That’s fine. I’m okay with me and my progress.

But if I don’t start making progress in the areas that this whole thing is about — sobriety, diet, exercise, sleep — then I’m just going to wind up saying the same things, over and over, forever.

That’s not good.

Bored is bad, for me especially.

I get stupid when I get bored. So keeping my interest levels up is very important.

I’ve messed around with, and abandoned, the idea of “challenges” a few times. I just don’t stick to them. But I think that might have been an early expression of boredom.

And I don’t think gamifying these goals works as well as actually striving to attain them. If I don’t do something to make progress today, I’ll be back in the chair tomorrow, talking about how I need to make progress. Boring.

So I might actually be boring myself into better health, which is a new one.

Boring myself into better health. Again, it’s a new approach. Might be hard to turn into a paperback. But if it works… here’s to boredom.