I should have a regular posting schedule, I know. Monday should be menus, Wednesday should be photos, Friday should be a list of five things. But the thing is, my brain doesn’t work that way. Not that I understand at all how my brain actually works, seeing as how every day when I wake up is like a crapshoot. I might have energy and motivation one day, and be completely scatterbrained the next.
I can make all the lists in the world, break tasks down into ‘manageable chunks’, use calendars and reminders and what have you, but there are some days that my brain just won’t focus on anything. Or at least, won’t focus on anything worthwhile and productive.
But at the same time, I have all these ideas. Ever since I recommitted myself to blogging here and only here, I find post ideas popping into my heads at the most random times. I actually have post ideas, you guys. I write them down on a notepad by my bed, on virtual sticky notes on my laptop, or if a great post title pops in my head, I start a draft post.
The problem, of course, is execution.
Which brings me to the reason for the post title, and a confession – I’m addicted to computer games. Like, addicted addicted. I didn’t realize how bad it had gotten until two days ago. I was sitting on the couch after everyone else had gone to bed, playing FIVE games at once. I had three running on my tablet and two on my laptop, and I was switching back and forth while also watching TV.
And then it hit me.
All of the games I was playing had the same thing in common. Each game had a virtual “world” of some kind, a village, a beach, whatever, and one of the tasks in each was cleaning up the space. I would start on one edge of the world and direct my little characters to set about cleaning it up. Click, click, click, on the virtual weeds or rocks or seashells or whatever, until the space was spotless.
See the problem yet?
People, I was playing five of these games at once while ignoring my overflowing inbox, stack of products to review, unopened mail, piles of papers to go through, housework, bill paying, you name it, I was ignoring it so I could devote my time to cleaning up places that didn’t exist, to making these perfect virtual worlds instead of dealing with reality.
I realized that what I like about those kinds of games is the instant reward. Click the weed, the character comes over, spends 3 seconds digging it up, and when it’s done, I get coins and experience points. Instant gratification! If every time I dusted a shelf, a shower of gold coins came out? You bet I would clean more! lol
So that’s my revelation, that I’m substituting virtual gratification for real life rewards. I know my husband would be so much happier if he came home after work and I had at least started dinner, or set the table, or put the piles of folded laundry away, or something. Anything. Of course he isn’t going to shower me with gold coins and stars, but his overall happiness affects everyone in our family, as does mine and the kids’. If Daddy’s happy, everyone’s more happy, and that should be reward in itself.
I deleted all of the game apps off of Facebook and uninstalled all the games on my tablet in between writing paragraphs of this post. Except for the My Little Pony game, which only Kaitlyn plays.
It’s not going to be easy to force myself to actually DO stuff instead of plopping down on the couch with my laptop or tablet or both. I’ll probably whine and bitch and be pissed off for a while, but then I’m hoping I’ll start to see those rewards that do come with personal effort. Like a cleaner house, less past due bills, and an inbox that doesn’t have over 1,000 unread emails in it. For starters.
I just know that I’m a 46 year old married Mom of three, and I cannot justify hours of computer games. Just making the decision to stop feels pretty darn good.