Saturday, August 31, 2013

Challenging Challenges

I need challenges.

I'm not a competitive person, but if I want to get something done, I need to have pressure. I need to have someone who isn't me pushing me to do something. I can't just say to myself: "Hey, you need to do this. It would really be good if you did it, so try getting it done by this time." I will ignore that voice, mainly because I know how lazy I am and also because I buckle when people beg or make cute faces to get out of trouble. God damn puppies.



So I need pressure. Four years of university has taught me that 90% of my productivity gets done in the final 48 hours of a project being due. The final product is not fantastic, but it is finsihed. So really what needs to be happen is something like secret deadlines. Tell me something is due on a Friday, I will get it done on a Friday. It will be full of spelling mistakes, missing correct formatting and grammar, and possibly uses an entire page of phoney sources, but it will be done. Then, the next morning when I have had a solid 12 hours of undisturbed pleasant sleep from my accomplishment, tell me it is actually due next Friday. It's at this point I will polish up that nulls**t-sized slab of text into a veritable Iliad.

Although admittedly that polishing will happen 48 hours before THAT deadline, but you get my point.

The only time I do not need a time constraint as my incentive, is when I become passionately engaged in a subject so engrossing I don't realise I'm still wearing the same clothes as yesterday until I go to the store to buy cupcake mix and wonder why I smell of feet and onions. Personally I find that the definition of true passion: complete tunnelling of all the senses so intense that your brain turns into a cone; creative juices funnelling toward one focus and one focus only. Just remember to go outside every now and then. Vitamin D is a good thing and the Sun can be your friend sometimes (That is an outright lie. I hate that Sun of a bitch more than all the albinos in the world. Mildly exaggerating).

The challenge I face with these "challenges" is that I have nobody to give them to me. I have tiny personal challenges I make myself almost every day but they are hard to live up to. I get home from 14-hour days that just drain all of my energy even if it's just simple work. Coming home to a relaxing atmosphere you just can't resist winding down. As soon as my shoes are off, all initiative I absorbed listening to Queen during my walk home just vanishes. I physically couldn't think of anything worse than having to use my brain after waking up at 5 o'clock that morning. Birds aren't even awake at that time.

But if I don't put those challenges to myself, who will? Who challenges you when you know that you're constantly pushing these tasks into the corners of your mind.

I don't want to rely on someone else all the time. Especially not a friend or family member. It becomes too reminiscent of your mother or father poking their head into your room and asking how you did on that assignment you were talking about a few weeks ago only to realise it is due in tomorrow and all you've been doing is harvesting strawberries on Farmville. That's right, Farmville. The candy crush of the 00's.

I also don't want to rely on a machine. I have already become too reliant on a smart phone I promised myself I wouldn't get attached too. Even if it does allow me to answer urgent emails from advisors while I'm nowhere near a computer. I don't want yet another machine reminding me of something I can easily hide behind a video of Regular Show.

Challenge me! Write a haiku in a minute, draw a pickle making sweet love to a jar a of peanut butter, compose a song about Miley Cyrus's sad spiral into whoredom. But mostly I want to be challenged to write. I want someone to tell me to write an original pilot for a cartoon or a plot summary of a sci-fi novel. Challenges let the juices flow. And I need those vitamin-packed juices so I don't have to go into the god damn sun.

I hate the sun so god damn much. Thank god Regular Show keeps me inside.


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