Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Misc: In Pursuit of Creativity and Productivity

Okay, first of, this is NOT a New Year's resolution. I've been reading various and sundry articles and blog postings about managing life and being focused and staying creative - enough to know it's a sign.

I'm going to attempt a moderate shift in my lifestyle.

The goal is to see if a few extra hours at the beginning of the day are better for productivity and creativity than those last few extra late hours I always seem to spend staring blankly at the monitor or flipping through the few channels we get, disgusted at the lack of interesting programs.

My current average routine looks something like this:
  • 7:15-30 am: Reluctantly get up, slowly help get the kids dressed, get a shower, go to work
  • 8:05 - 8:15 am: Arrive at work (I'm supposed to be there at 8:00)
  • Work 'till 5:00 pm - not much I can do here
  • 5:15 pm: Arrive home (5:30 if I stop at the game store, 6:00 if I go to the comic book store), eat dinner with the family
  • 6:00 - 7:00 pm: Kids run wild, usually try to get a load of dishes, pick up toys; sometimes we'll go out to eat or need to pick up something from the store
  • 7:15-30 pm: Get kids ready for bed, tuck 'em in (occasionally they'll be up 'till 8, rarely later)
  • 7:30-10:00: Wife and usually I do personal stuff - pay bills, freelance work, paint 40K, WiiFit, Facebook (her, not me), sometimes art - often on the couch while watching TV together
  • 10:00-???: I continue to work on personal stuff and/or play games while the wife goes to bed. If I don't build up some momentum on a project by this point, it's hopeless and I'll turn to video games. Nothing worthwhile on TV at this point.
  • 12:00 am: Bedtime, usually - not unusual for it to be later.
Here is the proposed change:
  • 5:30 am: Wake up, go downstairs and do WiiFit for 30 min. (seriously)
  • 6:00 am: Shower, get dressed for work
  • 6:30 am: Dedicated art time - probably start out doing digital speedpaints - go from there
  • 7:00 am: Kids are up, getting them ready for school, wife gets ready for work - I may find a little extra personal time once they're out the door - but I definitely need to be on the road no later than 7:45 am
  • 8:00 am - 9:59 pm: Keep it the same for now, maybe try to structure evenings better
  • 10:00 pm: Bedtime, no if's, and's, or but's
Possible issues:
  • Coordinating new routine with the wife's-get-up-and-shower time
  • Making sure not to snack or have caffeine after . . . 7:00 pm (?). Don't wanna be lying awake after 10 pm.
  • May need some additional structuring after the kids are in bed.
  • Getting up and going to bed the first couple of days is going to be a challenge.
One of the tips I picked up somewhere had to do with stating your intent - making it public. The idea is that once it's out there, a person is more inclined to stick with it.

So congratulations, you've just been incorporated into my scheme to become more creative and productive.

Ultimately, I hope that this will lead to more posts on here. But let's just take it one day at a time, okay?


  1. You get up at 7AM???? You are a lucky lucky man... my kids wake me up at 6AM.. sometimes 5:30... argh!!!

    but with regard to blogging / writing -- yes; early morning blogging is sometimes the best time for me.. at least to get posts started. Sometimes they stay around for days as drafts.. but the ones started at 5AM are often the most ambitious and longest...

  2. Well, 'wake up' may be a bit misleading - it is usually around 7am that I become aware of our 2 yr old yelling from her room and/or our 4 yr old climbing all over me.

    It used to be earlier, but constantly sending them back to bed and telling them to be quiest has slowly trained them to wait until 7. ;-)

  3. I switched to 5am this year because I write better in the mornings. It's worked very well, but I find nights very short now as I get home from work at 6pm.

    "10 o'clock?! Geez, I don't wanna go to sleep, i just got home." Heh.