Tardiness

My best friend tends to make fun of me and my attempts at doing… well, basically anything, and for a good reason. I constantly fail at making things happen; out of all the creative projects I’ve had in mind only Softie was ever released to public, and even then it took me two years to finish the 10-page prologue. What are the reasons for such tardiness?

Of course, as usual, there are multiple reasons for this. First of all, it is an issue of time. Back in junior high and during the beginnings of high school I had massive amounts of free time. Sometimes I would literally stare at the wall because even playing video games got a bit boring. By the time I started working on various projects – a few short stories, ambitious plans for the TIE Corps, planning of Softie – I had become busy with my maturity exam taken at the end of high school and with the choice of a university major. Later on came university itself, with all the partying and late night cramming. This effectively decimated a large amount of my free time in comparison to the past. The worst period was actually the 2012/2013 academic year, during which I attempted to study two majors at once. There were times when I could ill afford spending time on sleep, not to mention any kind of activity not connected directly with surviving and studying.

But, apart from the one-student-two-majors period, I’ve always had time. Sometimes more, sometimes less, but I could have always mustered at least an hour or two for myself. That should be plenty, right? Well, not if you suck at time management. And I know I do. Despite trying a lot of tricks, like creating schedules and trying to meet arbitrary deadlines, I fail to manage my time properly. I may spend hours upon hours simply staring at pictures on 9GAG or reading articles on news sites, when in this time I could probably finish like half a page of a comic or write a review or two for the blog.

This is directly connected to the way my mind works. I always feel I should be doing something important, yet not very pleasant – learning for an exam, learning new skills, looking for a job. At the very same time, I’d much rather just say “Screw this assignment, I’m draw something nice.” Unfortunately, the clash of these two attitudes means that I neither of them will win and I’ll just waste hours of my life surfing the Internet. Then, when it’s past midnight, I’ll reluctantly start doing the assignment I’m due for the next day and completely forego drawing. I’m not really sure if this is some kind of personality disorder, or simply that I was brought up in the spirit of “duty first, pleasure later.” Nevertheless, it remains a fact that as soon as I have something else to do, my mind and logic get screwed badly.

Last but not least, I suffer from a first world problem of having far too many interests. Even when I manage to somehow get past the issues detailed above, I have to decide what I actually want to do. The list is long:

  • drawing
  • playing video games
  • writing short stories
  • writing blog posts
  • learning to play the bass guitar
  • reading books
  • watching anime
  • watching TV series and films
  • painting Warhammer 40,000 miniatures
  • and a few more…

Doing all of these at once would mean spending a total of ten or fifteen minutes on each, so I would achieve nothing. On the other hand, if I focus on one thing, I will feel guilty about not doing something else, which brings us back to the previous paragraph. Plus, the backlog can get pretty scary: at the moment I have dozens of anime series that just wait to be watched, at least ten major video games (including two MMOs) that just wait to be played and finished, an entire Tau army to be painted, several Star Wars and Warhammer 40,000 novels as well as at least a dozen Honor Harrington novels to be read, and all that in addition to a few ideas for short stories. Not to mention that some things, like playing guitar, need to be done very frequently lest you you experience no progress.

I’ve been making a bit of progress over the past years, slowly learning how to conquer the issues plaguing me and my work, but I’m afraid it will still take several years until I learn to how to make the best use of the time and resources at hand.

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