The Best Use Of Time

Something that I struggle with a lot, right now in fact, is the constant worry that I’m not maximizing my time, and that whatever I’m doing has no guarantee of being the most productive thing. For example, should I take the time to write this blog? To what ends? Who do I even expect to read this, aside from myself? Is that time that could better be spent designing and implementing small games in, say, Unity? Are those games worth pursuing, or are they dead ends? If I do complete them, will they ever be seen or played by anyone?

It is of course silly to dwell too much on this, because almost no matter what I’m doing, that time is better spent doing *something* instead of wringing my hands in indecision. That doesn’t stop the incessant buzzing in the back of my mind though. Every second feels valuable, every moment not spent realizing full potential (or at least full leisure) feels like a waste.

I suppose some of that is spillover from the tightly budgeted workload I find myself having to deal with at work, where every wasted hour is viewed with a certain degree of panic. Some of it too is probably indicative of my need for a vacation, which I realized a week or two ago I haven’t done any of in like… this year. To that end, I do have some travels planned coming up, which I look forward to.

I’ve heard before that existential fretting is a sign of your ego resisting change. It is easier, after all, to embrace vague ennui than to face the painful recognition of one’s own lack of agency. Sometimes that embracing looks like fretting over time, or writing vague philosophical bullshit to avoid taking action…. Sometimes it comes down to not having well-defined goals, or metrics for success towards those goals. I should know better, as someone who for a living designs player goals and attempts to provide feedback towards those goals.

So with that in mind, my intentions are:

  • To come up with some basic designs for a pc game
  • To start sketching out concepts – while I am no professional artist, I would like the option of lateral thought in times where I am stuck on the game logic
  • To begin scaffolding the designs in code, picking core concepts and developing them in isolated test-beds
  • Once these pre-production steps are done, to plan out what a final version might look like
  • At some point during this, think of marketing, pulling in other resources…

I worry that this is ambitious for one person to do with scant free time divided between caring for a baby and maintaining a house and a marriage. I am also very unsure how much freedom I even have to pursue this in a way that won’t violate some clause of my employment. Some day I still hope to pursue this full time, but the pragmatist (and responsible father) in me won’t consign my family to the uncertainty of unemployment on a whim, so in the meantime I bide my time and wait for the opportunity to show itself. All I need now is to randomly stumble upon a bag of money…the great american dream of undeserved riches.

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