Keywords: motivation
In a manner somewhat similar to Maslow's hierarchy of needs, I can only achieve so much based off of my current state. The way I see it, my pyramid of productivity goes like this:
  • Seek More Responsibilities - It takes some real perseverance to repeatedly hit your head against a closed job market. The general feeling of futility keeps a glass ceiling in place the larger bulk of the time.
  • Engage In A Creative Work - The painstaking effort you put into using development software slowly manifests into a unique artifact everyone can enjoy. Such an endeavor requires you go beyond the call of duty, to reach beyond yourself.
  • Juggle Current Responsibilities - I think that, if you already have a job, it's easier than looking for one. Sure, you'll have your stressful moments, but you're not dispossessed, you know your place in life and what to do. A daily routine really takes the edge off.
  • Commit To Active Entertainment - You get some enjoyment out of it, and you feel better for having gone through the experience, but it still requires a bare minimum level of perseverance to actually committing to doing it.
  • Completely Idle Behavior - Do whatever comes naturally, whether or not it has any benefit. It's effectively wasting your time investing in the possibility you'll be called out to waste more time later.
The further down I am on the list, the smaller my locus of control currently is. One will generally be able to do everything on the list below their highest level of activity because they're less difficult than that. How high up one gets has to do with their physical condition and mental attitude, and these two things are linked somewhat.

The cold I caught last week has left me physically weakened and in generally bad habits. It was a doozie, everybody in my family caught it, it even gave my younger brother a sinus infection. My time investment last week was about 90% Internet forums and only about 10% anime and games, pretty much my lowest point.

As of today, I feel about 90% recovered from my cold. I still have a few minor symptoms, but it's not dragging me down nearly as much. However, the damage has been done, I'll probably need to actually exercise to restore my lost physical stamina, and my mental habits have settled bad places.

I've got a ways until I've pulled myself back up to the "Engage In A Creative Work" level that includes my BYOND independent game development. Consequently, I won't be getting back to work this week. I've other plans:

Tomorrow, a Rift beta event begins for 3 days. I plan to give it a heavy shakedown. I'm very encouraged to hear about this game's dynamic content focus, and I like what I see:

Rifts is looking a lot like a World of Warcraft clone that actually successfully transcends WoW. The beta event is only a three day event, so it won't hold me for long.

Also tomorrow, Champions Online goes Free To Play. If I could afford it, I think I'd prefer DC Universe Online. I've played both, and DC Universe Online is essentially Champions Online done right. However, for that kind of experience, I really don't think a monthly subscription is the way to go - action based console-like gameplay doesn't have that essential "hook" to it. For the time being, Champions Online will have the advantage.

Magicka comes out tomorrow, too, but I think I'm going to wait on critical reception.

Next week, hopefully I'll be back in shape enough to get some stuff done.