Sunday, June 15, 2014

Breaks and Choices


“We are our choices.”

Jean-Paul Sartre

“The right choice is hardly ever the easy choice.”

Rick Riordan, The Throne of Fire




A thought occurred to me that occurs often.  “It’s the weekend (vacation/night/day off/Tuesday).  Shouldn’t I take some time off?  Shouldn’t I take a little break?”  As I said, this thought occurs often.  I think I finally have an answer.
Yes, I can take a break.   Maybe I should.  Maybe I deserve one.  Maybe I will.  But it’s curious how often this thought comes.  It’s curious how tired I suddenly get when it’s time to do my work.  It’s curious how my breaks rarely help me feel as rested as completing my work does.
What is it I’m taking a break from?  Why am I so tired or in need of rest?  I don’t feel that tired when I’m playing Candy Crush or reading a comic book.  But when it’s time to work, suddenly I’m sleepy.  There are only two things that cure that – I can take a nap or I can keep working.  For now I’m going to keep working.  I’m going to write one more blog and get closer to my goal.  Then maybe I’ll take a quick nap.  Or maybe I’ll read some more.
I’m determined to end this summer feeling like I accomplished some things and that I used my time well.  I still feel that I waste a lot of time, so that’s why I want to finish this blog.  I don’t want to waste time.  I want to get closer to my goals.
Here are my choices:
I could finish this blog now and then another one tomorrow morning,
OR
I could go to sleep and finish this tomorrow.

I could work straight through without stopping,
OR
I could go to eBay or Facebook every few minutes.

I could keep working until I’m sure it’s time to stop,
OR
I could take breaks whenever something distracts me.

I could get up at 5:00 a.m. and get most of my work done by 7:00 a.m.
OR
I could get up at 8:00 a.m. and not be done until noon, if at all.

I could work with gratitude for my Purpose,
OR
I could complain that I shouldn’t have to work during my summer break,

I could read more books, books that give me ideas and help me improve as a writer

OR
I could read comic books, which I genuinely enjoy, but don’t benefit from as a writer


All my first choices have this in common:  they are more difficult.  All my second choices are easier, at least in the immediate.  My first choices do not guarantee my success, but my second choices guarantee that I won’t succeed.  So I keep working.  Maybe I’ll take a break later.  I’m not against them.  But if I’m not diligent, they will work against me.