“Laziness grows on people; it begins in cobwebs and ends in iron chains.”
Sir Thomas Fowell Buxton, 1st Baronet – maker of craft beer, slavery abolisher, and British elected official
One of the 7 deadly sins in Christian moral traditions. Its opposite, one of the 7 virtues, is diligence. I can be very diligent at being very lazy. Does that make me a virtuous sinner? Not sure but I am working hard at wasting less of my time and getting things done.
One of my resources in doing so is the book Better Than Before: Mastering The Habits Of Our Everyday Life, by Gretchen Rubin. See the footer menu below for the Goodreads link to the book. Much of the premise of the book is in order to understand your habits better, you have to understand yourself better. It talks about there being ‘Four Tendencies’, personality character sets that shed light on how we get, keep, and break habits. The quiz I took before reading the the book says I’m a ‘Rebel.’ Yeah, no surprise there. Rebels don’t like to be told what to do. I’ve told you that before, oh a few times now I think. Being told to buy a hat is just one example.
I got the book at Christmas from my kids because they know how much I enjoyed Rubin’s earlier book, The Happiness Project. However, I’m reading it VERY slowly. In fashionable Rebel style, I put the book down every time I feel like it is telling me what to do. Despite my keen desire to change some of my bad habits, as a Rebel I even resist self-control. That’s frustrating you know. To try to tell myself to do / not to do something and my biggest roadblock to accomplishing my goal is myself telling me “nah, I’ll do it my way, when I want to, how I want to, if I want to.” Oh the voices in my head could match up against a political debate anytime.
One of the bad habits I’ve been trying to work on is to curb how much time I spend playing games on my computer. One game in particular actually that is so old it’s written in DOS. For you youngins reading this, here’s the Wiki explanation of what DOS is. I’ve been playing the game since before my oldest was born. He’s 24. Some people veg out watching TV, bingeing on Reddit, or reading. Much of my chill time is spent playing Isle Wars. Too much of my time is spent playing that damn game.
In early January as I was getting into the book, I came across a part in it that told the story of a man who wanted to get rid of one of his bad habits. He set himself up for success by saying for the period of time he wanted to not drink, if at any time he did enjoy an alcoholic bevy, he would have to pay a certain amount of money to a charity whose mission he abhorred. And he made himself accountable for his self-induced cognitive behavioural therapy by telling someone about it. Brilliant I thought so I did the same. Fired off a text right away to a friend, and said for every 30 minutes or part thereof that I went over my set daily limit on playing Isle Wars, I would send money to a charity I did not like.
How did I do? Not bad I guess but after the one-month challenge I did have to do an online donation to a charity whose work was the complete opposite of my moral and ethical opinions on the subject matter. I’ll leave the charity nameless for now as I have enough debates going on in my own head, I don’t really want to start one up with any of my readers right now too. They were difficult to find though. I’m such a kind, generous, and open-minded person [and prideful too obviously, another deadly sin!], it took a lot of searching on charity lists to find one I could use for my project. And it just about killed me when I gave them some of my own hard-earned money. But I did it and since January I have continued to work at keeping my game playing to shorter time blocks in my day.
So in response to today’s Daily Prompt – Price … the cost of my sloth lead to the improved financial outlook of an organization I dislike. Not a price I want to pay again anytime soon. Lesson learned – I hope.
Featured image source: cwmetrics.com
A self-parking chair developed by Nissan in response to the pain in the butt of having to tidy up office chairs after boardroom style meetings. Maybe I should invest in one – and program it to park itself AWAY from my computer when Isle Wars is calling out to me.