Friday, May 04, 2007

Not dead yet

Whenever I'm unemployed, I tell myself that I will use my time to achieve great things. The one thing that I hate most about a regular job is that it dominates my time so completely. I don't have any nice big blocks of time to devote to my own projects. Work gets first claim on my time and I get what's left. Because I carry that frustration around when I'm working, I actually look forward to a little unemployment from time to time. Sadly, It never works out the way I hope and this time was no different.

Because my employer gave me notice of my current unemployment, I had time to plan for it. I expected to have a well organized job search that would allow me a nice chunk of time each day to devote to working on all of those delayed projects: working ion the yard, fixing up the house, and doing some serious research and writing. Instead, unemployment crept in like some deadly garden fungus to choke off all creativity and directed energy. Anytime I think about starting something else, the unemployment specter pops up to say, shouldn't you be doing something to make money or find a job. Even when I've exhausted my leads for the day, the guilt lingers and I'm reduced to distracted puttering. This is good for cooking and cleaning, but not for much else. It's deadly for blogging.

I think most people, especially those who have been graduate students, have experienced this kind of painful procrastination at one time or another. Fortunately, this week I was tossed a few hours of paid work from my old employer. It's amazing how a little positive reinforcement works to break the logjam. Just knowing that my talent is recognized enough to pay for (if not enough to keep around) does wonders for my frame of mind. Now that I've given them my best, I can also give it to you, my readers. Give me a few minutes to go through all of these scraps of paper with blog ideas and see what's not hopelessly outdated and I'll get something up for your reading pleasure.

But first, I feel a sudden need to wash the dishes and take out the recycling.

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