Tuesday, January 29, 2008

The Day After

Happy Tuesday everybody. It feels really good to be here writing tonight. It's been a very good day. I woke up early for a meeting, and had a four hour nap after school. That puts the time at 1:41 AM right now. I know that's later than I'd like it to be, but I'll take it for now. Things are going to change there, but we'll handle that in a few minutes.

I just got done having a good talk with Michael. It's always great to have a sit down and talk with my siblings. They're full of wisdom. They've been where I am right now, which is way way cool. I love that there is mutual respect between us. I care what he says, and he cares what I say. It's a happy arrangement.

Rebounding off of blogaday has been pretty interesting. I got used to coming home every day and having comments waiting for me in my inbox. Granted, I didn't always get comments on every post, but it was just cool to always have something waiting. I felt like I was giving the world something, and I was always excited to see how it affected the world. I still come home and expect a comment, but I realize I haven't posted, so there's no reason to expect one.

I do still love blogaday a lot. It did good things for me. It's nice to be done with it, for sure, but I'm excited for the future because of it. Blogaday proved that I can pull some pretty ferocious stuff off when I really set my mind to it. I've got plans for the future, that's cool.

Because blogaday was so incredibly successful for me, I'm announcing the next phase in nightly-adventures. Last time I called out 20 straight days of posting. Tonight's announcement is a little different. Tonight I'm announcing the next phase of my life.

For an undisclosed amount of time, I'm thinking all of February (with a few exceptions), I'm going to end my days at 11. That is substantially earlier than I have been ending my days for years now. It will be a big adjustment for me, but I really feel like it's the best thing for me to do at this point.

For the past 17 years of my life, I have more or less been on the defensive. I have had success being defensive. Under normal circumstances, I default to my "at rest" position. When something comes up, like homework, or a meeting, or mom and dad ask me to do something, or anything of that nature, I leave my at rest position and go do it. Once that job is accomplished, I return to at rest. Under these circumstances, I accomplish everything that is officially required of me, more or less. It has been working great.

But I want to change things. I want to get out of the defensive and into the offensive. I want to start being proactive in making the world a better place. I might write an official post about this some day, but when I say "Make the world a better place" I mean that I'm starting with me. As I see it, my responsibilities regarding the world are, in order, me, my family, my friends, my community, the economy, and then the world in general.

So we're starting at the beginning. The beginning of me making the world a better place is me making me a better person. And the beginning of me making me a better person starts with a healthy sleep pattern.

I feel like I've been doing decent. I've gotten where I am today under the old system, and it's not a terrible one. But I feel that if I am going to progress any further, I'm going to need to be energized. I'm going to need to be able to stretch my body when I need to. I'm going to need more help from the sleep department.

And so that's the plan. It's almost the polar opposite of blogaday, as plans go. Blogaday was all about a product, all about performance. This new plan, sleepaday, will doubtless hinder my initial performance. I am at my peak productivity after midnight. I think deeper and I write more effectively. Because the whole rest of the world sort of stops, it allows me to gain almost hyper-focus, and I can get things done very effectively. Sleepaday is a conscious effort to stop abusing the system. It will hurt initial output.

Ninety percent of the posts I've written this past year have been penned after 11. Every major essay I've completed this year has been printed after 3 AM. Any significant calculus assignment I've done as homework has been completed after midnight. The wee hours of the night have been my arena for homework for the past really long time. I'm condemning the whole building, and we're picking up and moving somewhere else.

It'll be a pretty monumental change. It's going to require that I start doing my homework earlier. It's going to mean that my afternoon naps will either have to go, or they'll have to be shortened considerably. It's going to take a lot of work.

And I'll fail quite a few times, no questions there. I considered starting today, but I ended up with a four hour nap, so I'm going to ride that one out for now. The old system is still viable, no questions. When a big project comes up, it'll be really hard not to break down and revert to what has given me so much success in the past.

It feels almost like metrification. The whole country is so beautifully organized on the Imperial system. We love to go buy a gallon of gas. We all know that Metrics is a better way, but the energy required to change things to metrics is incredibly high. So far, we as a country have been unwilling to exert that energy. Imperial isn't killing us, so we're not changing.

And the old system, it's not exactly killing me. I've been doing alright, more or less.

But it's time to take the next step. Here I go.

I might drop off the radar for a while. You might not see any posts for a while. I'll try, certainly, but I make no guarantees. I am committed to making this happen. I really believe that this is the next step. Both symbolically and literally, this is going to change things. This is going to open doors for me. This is what's holding me back right now, this whole idea of staying up super later to scrape by. I want to be proactive, and this is the first step down that path.

And so I'd appreciate any support available on this journey. It will be worth it in the end, no questions. Blogaday did great things for this blog. That means for me, and for the community. Sleepaday has the power to far surpass blogaday in terms of benefit to both me and you. It's an investment that will be difficult and a bit painful at the beginning, but it's going absolutely going to change things.

I undertake this journey, in part, because of how great blogaday went for me. I feel empowered to actually make it happen. Blogaday was a challenge, but it's one that I pulled through on. Sleepaday will be even harder. But I really believe that I can do it.

This new plan is going to change things. And so here I go. It's 2:02 AM. Late, definitely. Tomorrow night I'm shooting for bed at midnight. I'm shooting for the day to be officially over at 11. That means homework completed and computer shut down. The last hour of my night will be devoted to study and journal. It gives me more time on those than I usually devote, and that's something I'm very excited for.

I don't want anybody to get the idea that I'm leaving the population after 11. If I'm needed, shoot me a text, and I'll be wherever I need to be in a jiffy. I understand that there will be times when I'm needed after 11, and I'm alright with that.

It's a plan, and I'm excited about it. I've got other plans. I've got plans up the wazoo. But the success of any of those plans is going to depend on sleepaday. Sleepday is going to empower me like I've seldom been empowered before. It's the next step, and I'm finally ready to take it.

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