I’m not going to go into it, but I’ve been feeling sorry for myself and flirting with depression quite a bit over the past few weeks. That’s over now.
Earlier this week I was listening to the most recent episode of Back to Work, and Merlin Mann seemed to be talking directly to me. Specifically, his larger point (although you should really listen to it yourself) is that even if you’re in a less-than-ideal work situation you should still act like you’re the one in charge of your own destiny. Because you are. (Feel free to keep your Calvinist-based comments on this concept to yourself, fellow Christians.)
(P.S. If you’re going to listen to that episode, you should probably skip to about the 35:00-ish mark, because Merlin spends the first chunk of the podcast talking about super-nerdy stuff like TextMate Bundles.)
Anyway: No, I have not been using alcohol for self-medication, as the title of this post might suggest, but I have been acting like someone without agency, so no more of that.
I’m actually pretty lucky in quite a few ways. One of those ways is that I currently get to edit a movie. That I wrote. And produced. And directed. No, no one’s paying me to do it. Yes, it was still a pretty fantastic thing that I got (and get) to do, even if it never results in money. How many other people got to make a movie this year? Probably only about 10,000 in the entire U.S., and that is not very many, proportionally.
If you’re curious, I’m about 40% of the way through the rough cut of the movie. A little bit that’s because it just takes a long time to edit movies, and even more it’s because I don’t have as much spare time as I used to have at work (I work a third-shift gig with some dead hours in it for accomplishing personal tasks). But it’s also a little because I’ve been allowing myself to be distracted and pulled in multiple directions, and that’s where we circle back to that concept of agency.
I am not naturally good at multitasking in a macro kind of way. I’m pretty decent at micro-multitasking, such as when three of my clients at work ask me to do things for them all at once and I have to prioritize those requests and get them all done before the next thing comes up. I am not good at the kind of multitasking where I have to manage three or more different projects for several weeks or months and give each of them exactly the right attention at exactly the time they need it.
Recently, this has meant that I’ve ignored a lot of emails or answered them late, not finished blog posts in a timely manner (or at all), let personal chores slide while I worked on other things that ultimately turned out not to matter very much, and heavily used the internet for procrastinating because I felt overwhelmed by all the other tasks clamoring for my attention.
So henceforth I will be focusing on two (2) things: editing this movie, and another thing. Which I won’t tell you about. It’s a secret, and you can wait along with everyone else for the official announcement. Builds character.