March 27, 2010

I've got no time!

Busy, busy, busy.

I have been working on a kitchen remodel for the past week and a half with a friend of mine. I haven't done much interior construction work in the past (outside of fixing up the house for sale), so a lot of what we are doing is new to me. So far we have done the tear out, moved a wall, put up some Sheetrock, and tiled the floor. Next week we will be installing the cabinets and maybe some of the appliances. Of course it has been hard work, but it has been great to learn some new skills. I am certainly not a pro, but I would certainly feel more comfortable in tackling some of the projects now. Still on the schedule to learn is electrical!

The drag is that the job is about 2 1/2 to 3 hours away, so that means lots of commuting time and not much down time at home. Daily stuff and projects are naturally piling up a bit. This is also the reason for the somewhat limited posting recently. But I have found in the past that I work best with a little added pressure of deadlines and time limits. It is also a good exercise to see what sorts of things can fall by the wayside and not be missed, like tv and internet time.

I read a post on Zen Habits last night just before bed entitled, How to Reclaim Your Attention. The first few paragraphs:
A while back I (a bit ironically perhaps) tweeted this message:
"Consider what you give your attention to each day. It’s a precious resource, & determines the shape of your life."
This seemed to strike a chord with many people, who I think are feeling overwhelmed these days. Our attention is being pulled in too many directions, leaving us feeling overloaded, distracted, chaotic, spread thinly, without focus.

There are a million blogs, people, services, media, competing for our attention. Our attention is limited, and valuable, making it one of the most precious resources we have.

The world wants that attention. Only you can decide where it goes.

Frequently when new lanes are added to a freeway, it doesn't seem to reduce traffic congestion. Car trips increase rapidly to fill the new capacity and commuters are left sitting in the same frustrating traffic. Like highway capacity, if you extend the amount of time available in a day, it often fills up with junk rather than providing additional time spent pursuing your passions.

The remodel job will last at least another month, so I will need to make better use of my free time to get things done and pursue my interests. I certainly wouldn't want to have this sort of commute indefinitely (I don't know how people do it), but I will do my best to make use of the limited time to sharpen my focus. Hopefully when additional free time comes back, I will make great use of it rather than filling it with junk.

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