Walking uphill

March 26, 2009

‘Cause I was all up in a piece of heaven/While you burned in hell, no peace forever

Filed under: Uncategorized — walkenji @ 8:27 pm

I am currently working my way through the Python challenges, I manage  to beat the first one once I saw one of hints I opened while randomly trying to suceed.

I’m currently halfway thru the 2nd one. I know how to beat it, but I’m still working on it.
But the best part is the fact that I’ve progressed from using the PythonWin interface to actually running a python program from the command line… and printing out “Hello World”. Then just to be different I added “Are you my Mummy?”.. bonus points if you know what I am referring to!!

In other news, I’ve just discovered Cal Newport’s blog. It has a lot of good information that would have been useful to know in uni. I just finished submitting a job application this morning, and it was a bit of a nightmare. I automatically fell back into my uni habits, assumed that it wouldn’t take that long to do, and so I left it to the last minute. The worst part is I’ve known it was due today for about least the last 4-6 weeks. So here I was, wasting my working day trying to get it completed, feeling really disorganised and stressed, only getting 3 1/2 hrs sleep last night and I just completed it about 1 1/2 hrs before the deadline.

My actions frustrate me sometimes. Especially when I realise the impact it has on my life and my motivation without me being aware it… Cal Newport’s blog got me thinking.

First: His advice about using pen and paper to put down ideas. I love using pen and paper (btw, today I tried out the mini fountain pen my friend gave me and it’s pretty cool). I find that it helps me brainstorm and get my thoughts out and allows me a more physical, hands-on interaction with my thoughts. Using a computer screen frustrates me a bit because I can’t touch it, I can’t move it, I’m so limited by the tools that I’m using that it just wastes my time. Paper on the other, leads to a free flow of ideas and inspiration….

Second: Boredom. The article talks about how we don’t achieve anything because the instant we get bored or something becomes too much effort, we rush off to get an insta-fix of some sort of entertainment, be it facebook, tv or hanging out with friends. Personal and skill development is under-rated nowadays and everyone is in it for the immediate rewards. But the real satisfaction comes from putting in the effort and seeing a job well done and knowing at the end that you’ve changed yourself the way you wanted to.

Thirdly: Scheduling productivity. Cut down on the number of projects you are doing hits home for me. I am always trying to do to much at the same time, and as a result, I don’t get anything or much done. The solution is for me to step back and prioritise what I want to get done, and then go ahead and do it. And I love Cal’s idea of starting early. My conscious, but definitely not subconscious goal, as I always sabotage myself.

Cal has so many useful articles that I’ll have to take my time and look through. One that has jumped out at me is 5 thought experiments. I think I’ll write this one up when I get the time.

Finally, I just got back from my Tae Kwon Do lesson tonight, and I’ve been working on my 1st pattern, Taeguk Il Jung, for grading in two weeks time.  And I just realised how much more coordinated I’ve become since starting Tae Kwon Do. I am so much more flexible (someday I’ll be able to do the splits) and I’m really good at changing directions and moving on my toes. And I don’t lack power, but I do have control issues. I’ve still got lots to learn, but I have to remember to celebrate what I’ve achieved so far.

My last note for this is procrastination. I’m putting in all this effort typing this blog message, when I really should be packing for my hike tomorrow, deciding what I’ll buy to eat, doing my dishes and getting an early night to catch up on sleep.

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