Defeating ‘The Nag’ – My New Year’s Creative Resolution

So. We’re into the year 2016, and I’m already struggling to keep up with my New Year’s Resolution. Not because it’s impossible – it’s not like I’ve promised to run a 10k by this time tomorrow – but just because it requires my patience, and my mental discipline, and not to feel so bloody tired all the time.

I’ll show you what my resolution is, because it involves a bit of the task itself.

My New Year's Resolution(1)

My two-part resolution: to feel more productive, and to be okay when not feeling productive.

Because it’s one thing to be productive – I’ve read more books (nearly two) since Boxing Day than I have in the last six months – but it’s another not to let it nag me when I’m not feeling productive.

Thanks to some hand-wringing at my angelically patient fiancée earlier this evening, I’ve come up with a name for it: The Nag. We’re only four days into the new year, and The Nag is already getting at me to get something done.

Which, again, would be fine if I’d spent the 93ish hours of 2016 so far doing absolutely nothing. But I have been doing things. Plenty of things. I just about managed the first day back at work today after a good long break, and I’ve done plenty of reading. I’ve even broken the back of the main storyline of Fallout 4, if we were really struggling to list any achievements.

But I shouldn’t be struggling to say I’ve done anything in 2016, for two main reasons:

  • I’ve definitely been productive.
  • We are less than 100 hours into 2016.

Pretty unreasonable, right? A brace of blog posts ready to go in the coming days, plenty of writing done, nearly two books read. But there’s The Nag.


Ay, there’s The Nag.

It’s kind of a vicious cycle, really. If I’d been markedly non-prolific on a regular basis, I’d have been okay with The Nag because it would’ve kept me creating. But it persists now despite all my efforts. And my writing about The Nag in an attempt to reveal all its petty, silly demands and make it sound silly, is beginning to make me sound silly.

100 hours into 2016? I’ve only had Fallout 4 for about six weeks, and I’ve almost certainly put 100 hours into that too. Playing the game non-stop for an equivalent amount of time now would be (heaven, and also) conceivably a waste of my time.

But when I’ve stopped being productive for the day, The Nag persists. That’s why I’m making it my resolution; to be productive when I want to be, and not to let The Nag get to me when I don’t.

If any of that made sense to you, please, share your battles to stay content. I’m off now to Nag some raiders, and gunners, and deathclaws.

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