Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Greed

One of the most common advice people give me is that I need to find a better job.

These are words that I question on a regular basis. I can understand why people have this desire for a 'better job'. Some want to be fulfilled in their career. They want to be respected in their chosen field and engage with it on a regular basis. Others want to be paid enough to further their other goals in life.

For me, work has never been about living. I simply chose my career path and got the required qualifications because I believed I would have been good at it. I wanted to have a decent job so that I could comfortably pursue my other dreams... but last year I had to face the harsh reality that my dreams were folly and there's nothing I can do about it. I suppose I'm still grieving over it in a way.

When I made the decision to stop fooling myself and break the shackles that were keeping me from moving forward with my life, I was hoping that some new desire will pop up and I would pursue it as my life's goal. That didn't happen.

I don't drink, I don't smoke and I don't like prolonged exposure to crowds so I don't spend any money to go out. I get my energy from reading and gaming. Unfortunately, I have full stacks of books I haven't read and games I haven't played so my financial motivation remains extremely low. Despite having a job that most people I work with despise and want out as soon as possible, I find myself with a roof over my head and bread on the table. I don't need to live in a palace or eat caviare to survive. These things don't matter to me.

Someone once told me she wished for me to have a job I'd be good at because she hates to see people waste their potential. In my case, I don't see a difference. Whatever job I have, my personal needs are low enough that I don't need much of an income. Neither do I want my career to define who I am. Whether I have a successful career or none at all, the same problem remains.

I don't know what to do...

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

New Year's Resolutions

I have mixed feelings when it comes to New Year's Resolutions. I haven't had the habit of making any for most of my life, it's only recently that I've even learned people do such silly little things. The common conception seems to be that people who make them, forget about them in a manner of weeks. I think that's because people either don't take their word seriously or they come up with resolutions to be someone else rather than just working on making yourself better. That's something I realised somewhere along the line last year. That I was too focused on being someone else and just caused myself pain. Now I'd like to just try be myself and do things that I enjoy.


Reading

I always give myself a goal of reading thirty books a year and never manage to get there. In itself, it's not a bad goal. Although I keep failing, it does keep me reading. There are, however, a few things about my reading habits that I would like to change.

I kept approaching them as sporadic so I often didn't bother to even pick up a book when I could. Instead, I simply kept browsing the internet, just wasting my time. Another issue is that despite having non-fiction books, I very rarely pick any up. I've got some interesting books on language and grammar which just gather up dust on the shelf. This has to change. Finally, I'd like to change my surroundings a bit.

Below are ideas I wish to implement:

- Go to bed an hour early and spend it reading, rather than stare aimlessly at my mail.
- On my day off, at least once a week, read a chapter from a non-fiction book.
- Once a week go to the café round the corner, order a cup of tea and read for an hour or so.

Write

I obviously don't write enough. Not because of a lack of ideas. I put great value in imagination so I'm rarely out of ideas. The sad truth about writing is that unless you sit down and write, you're not writing. Little known fact is that I have a really cool notebook which I could use to scribble down ideas and scenes. I really need to have it in close proximity and catch all those stray thoughts that catch my fancy. After which I have to work on them, use all those nifty tools I've got installed and produce words on electronic paper.

I had enough of having the ghosts of my past approach me to ask how's my book going. The one which stopped at chapter 1, probably not even going past half thereof. I'd like to get back into reviewing too, either whatever film I saw recently or book I've read.

- Get into the habit of writing down ideas, keep idea book at hand
- Write a blog post once a month (personal or review)
- Work on writing more

Art

Last year I've dabbled in jewellery making. While I enjoyed it and was encouraged to proceed with the course, I haven't done anything with it. I looked into buying some equipment but it's not an investment I'm ready for just yet. Instead, I'd like to finish some other projects I had lying around. Firstly, there are some figures that need painting. I was just getting into the hobby, getting interested in painting and sculpting miniatures, when life hit hard and I had to change my living arrangements into a much smaller space, I simply didn't have room to proceed. Now I no longer have that excuse but I'm still allowing those miniatures to gather dust. This has to change.

- Read the book I have on painting miniatures.
- Paint the miniatures I have.

Language

Since this part of my life is, basically, my obsession, I will have the easiest time with it. I actually enjoy reading up on grammar and I immensely enjoy discussing grammar of different languages. Learning languages is very fun, even though people tell me I should just focus on one. Problem is, I can bored of going with just one. After a while it just becomes tedious and I need a change. Juggling two or three keeps me going far better than having one to focus on. However, I do need to organise my notes better so I can revise more efficiently and focus on parts of grammar that I find personally challenging.

The other side of this coin is teaching. Last year I was awarded a certificate in Teaching English. I looked for a job in teaching but didn't find any. My decision to take a break went long enough and now I'm closing in on this feeling of limbo. It is not a good place to be. I'm already starting to doubt my skills and knowledge even though I'm given proof to the contrary often enough. I had ideas for a personal website dedicated to languages, just my thoughts on teaching and learning, and a way to present myself as a language professional.

- Organise a language learning folder
- Build a language website for myself
- Apply for translation services

Roleplaying

I haven't done any roleplaying in about a year. I used to be fairly active on both gaming forums and play-by-post for the better part of my life but that has waned since I found out the games I've been running just don't hold up to my expectations. I'm still interested in it though and I wish I could find people to have interesting games with but I pretty much gave up on that. Nowadays I mainly listen to podcasts. I used to read gaming blogs but I drifted away from that too. Problem is I still have a lot of unread books that are gathering dust and I feel like buying some more. So first order of business if to read the ones I have because right now it doesn't feel like I've got any.

- Read a roleplaying game book.

Gaming

I've been playing a lot of games lately (mostly Halo). I think I started playing more regularly after getting an account on Backloggery and realising that I really do have a lot of games I haven't finished. Having an Xbox also helps since my laptop is not good enough to handle gaming. I'll mainly just keep on doing the same as last year.

- Reach my TrueAchievements goals
- Make sure my backlog progress is higher than -28
- Have less than 35 Unranked games on Raptr

Body 

Taking care of myself has never been my strong suit. I like to think I'm faring better in this respect than in years prior but it's not easy to say for certain. I've neglected this mortal coil for a long time despite knowing I really shouldn't do so. There's one thing I wanted to do which I've been putting off for a long time.

- Get a tattoo