what's important is seldom urgent
Whenever people ask me about my plans these days I never have any idea what to answer. Without a 9-to-5 the weekends might as well be weekdays. I wake up, get some work done, write a little, apply for jobs, and read. Rinse and repeat.
I've been thinking about how feeling lonely poses a health risk of smoking up to 15 cigarettes a day, specifically how everyone I know would give me a hiding if I bought a pack of cigarettes yet hardly bat an eye if I stayed at home for a week. Society reacts to risk in such unusual ways. We lock up cigarettes while selling hot dogs to kids, even though processed red meat is classified as the same class of carcinogen as cigarettes and asbestos. (I know there is the caveat of quantity. But still.)
As you can probably guess, I don't have many plans this weekend. I have class tomorrow as usual with my new student. The Internet friends I met up with to climb are going to hike up a mountain Sunday night, but it's ten degrees below freezing. The skin on my hands is already cracked and I don't want to push my immune system more than I need to.
Despite the cold and my listlessness I've been decently productive lately. Productive in the sense that I've been doing things, but maybe not the most important things. My tutoring company offered me some light development tasks to do and I obliged. After all, I have the time and could use the spare cash. But getting those done saps a little more time and energy away from the job hunt.
I am not arranging my life in accordance with the Eisenhower principle. The 34th President once said,
"I have two kinds of problems: the urgent and the important. The urgent are not important, and the important are never urgent."
From which this corollary follows (which I prefer):
What is important is seldom urgent and what is urgent is seldom important.
It's too easy for me to get caught up with urgent things, because they yell and scream for my attention. If I don't do them something bad will happen. So I spend my days lesson planning for my next student and finishing my dev tasks. But the important thing is certainly figuring out what I want to do, landing a job, and getting out of here. Yet nothing bad will jump out at me if I don't apply for jobs. I have to force myself to prioritize what is important over what is urgent.
I've been struggling with the hunt. Filling out applications is the easy part. The hard part is deciding what types of positions I want and finding them. Not knowing can feel freeing — being unattached to a single outcome takes away a lot of pressure — but it makes knowing how to spend my time rather difficult. I can't possibly prepare for all my possibilities. Do I learn GIS? Study for the LSAT? Brush up on my coding?
Writing all this was painfully hard. But I don't want to break this streak of writing everyday until I reach one month, at the very least.