As I worried may happen a few weeks ago I think I may have spread myself too thin. When work has been offered to me I’ve taken it (including a job solely by myself that I am pretty proud of), I haven’t missed a day of college or even been late yet, I’ve tried to remain active and I have continued losing weight albeit slowly. That is as far as I’ve gone; I haven’t started week three of cough to 5k yet nor have I been to the gym for a third time since I joined mid-August. I have ordered the equipment to make Youtube videos and have made one for fun with my stepson but the game I have been waiting nine months for (to a degree 23 years for – it’s a remake of maybe the first game I loved as a child) I haven’t even had a look at yet. The plan was to order the game online and download it as soon as it was available and start making videos of me playing to upload to Youtube to try and get ahead of the curve. Of course plenty of companies and people got the game early and have videos already out before the general public can hit download, add to that my tiredness from work, college, and family life, and of course my obligations lie with my partner and kids first – to the point I don’t really mind having not played the game. Upon reflection I have both rambled and overloaded simultaneously.

The plan going forward is to give every ounce of attention to college required (and we have been told not only are things going to get a lot harder but also college is likely to close due to covid so we will have to work from home) which includes reading some pretty hefty technical books In our spare time. Outside of, but in conjunction with, college my next priority is work; I’ve applied for plenty of electrical jobs and will continue to do so while also setting up the business my brother and I are starting and trying to get some work through that. I’m hoping that the fact we are available to start a job with almost no waiting time at a good price will get us initial work, following on from that our prices, professionalism and perfectionism will, fingers crossed, get us some more work through word of mouth. I personally will not leave a job unsafe and have never been one to try and rush or cut corners, my brother is exactly the same – he treats each job as if it were his own home and won’t accept anything less than perfect. I’m optimistic but sadly also have some doubts about myself – at the minute I’m just convincing myself these doubts are unfounded, that I’ll make sure the job is done well or I’m blocking them out. It’s not just in work I get these doubts, I have them in regard to writing, this website, making Youtube videos, learning a language or new skill, college, the gym and running. Pretty much everything I do I doubt myself to some degree, I guess that explains why I either fail to start something or I start and become wildly inconsistent at best, give up at worst. I guess that’s also why video games have their appeal – everything takes place in a vacuum, tutorials and easing in, little victories and rewards from the get-go, gradually increasing challenges and completion. Life couldn’t be further from that; victories are large and distant seeming completely unobtainable. There is no ‘completion’ and the challenges start difficult with no sign of easing up; all you can hope for is to find a comfortable routine and you’re never blindsided by some spanner thrown in the works. That is of course until you are too old or too close to death to make a change and realise that you should have done things differently. Excuse my rant and please don’t worry about me, despite how this paragraph reads I am in a very good place at the moment. I just feel like I’ve ridden this ride a little too long at the moment. I should add to this that my personal life is in the best place it has ever been right now, as always it’s just in a professional sense (as always) and I guess my spare time (how to use it best, optimised for enjoyment as well as productive) that is troubling me.

My writing definitely needs work too; I need to work on structure and effectiveness for sure. Too often I will repeat the same points or ramble when I could get what I want to say across in a sentence or two and move on. This applies to my fiction writing but also the blog. Also, I have been writing notes and ideas for stories but nothing substantial and I must admit that does upset me a little. I think I just worry that first of all if I do that it would retract from me doing college work, setting up my construction business and finding work, going to the gym or running, and my family life. Secondly my doubts tell me that I’m incapable of writing this story or it’s not a good idea. The first reason feels like an excuse and the second is just an intrusive thought that on good days I have no trouble dismissing, admittedly on bad days they can get a little overwhelming but the older I’ve got the better I’ve got at dealing with them. Just do it is a great ethos to have; if it doesn’t work it doesn’t make me a failure, if I fail it means I tried and learned, if I don’t like it I can move forward with that knowledge.

As for the short term I am finding time management to be important. Monday and Tuesday evenings I go to college, Wednesday evening I take my stepson to kickboxing, Friday evening I play rugby at the local club, Sunday mornings I take my stepson to rugby and help the coach run the session. Monday to Friday days are obviously open for work but last week I only did three days and this week I spent two or three hours Monday and Tuesday on that small job by myself. Days where I’m not in work I spend time with my girlfriend and baby daughter and as much as I love it I need to make an effort to use that time to study, work out, write or if I feel like playing a game at least record it and put in Youtube so in some way it can be counted as some kind of productive. Today I’m glad I’ve at least written this and now I’m off to enjoy my game then later I’m meeting four friends for a meal before Boris bans any kind of social interaction. I’m in a good place right now and the plan is to find my own way of maintaining it rather than hoping it continues, as soon as I’ve found that I’ll let you know.

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