Janet (j4) wrote,

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Drip drop drip drop drop drop drop

This is very boring, but I've got a list of things I'm going to try to get done this week, and I'm going to put it up here in the hope that some vague sense of external accountability will make me more likely to do them:

[ ] 6 Job applications
In case anybody cares, these are: fundraising assistant at Macmillan Cancer Research; editorial-type-thing at Analysys; information analyst at the NHS; legal assistant at the Refugee Legal Centre; Teaching Resources Co-ordinator in the University's medicine department; some kind of general admin assistant at an EFL place whose name I forget. I never said I had a clear "career path" (whatever that is) in mind.
[ ] Do at least two clothes washes
[ ] Phone the piano tuner. (Other 90s comedy fans will be amused to hear that he's called Rob Newman.)

Only a short list, but that way there's some hope I'll get some of it done.

I've realised that usually I put lots of things-to-buy on my list of Things To Do. Sometimes there are things I really need to buy -- like food, and stamps -- but I think in general putting things-to-buy on a list of things-to-do is just reinforcing the feeling that buying things "counts" (blah, blah, moo) as getting things done, as achieving something.

I know this sounds like overanalysis of something as simple as a shopping list or a task-list, but Money Problems and What Am I Achieving are two of the biggest "issues" (blah, blah, quackety-oink) on my mind at the moment, and I want to try to do something about them.

Which reminds me: I came up with a Plan for trying to stop myself impulse-buying so much stupid stuff. (Some kind of plan is necessary; when I was sorting out clothes to get rid of, they included several things that I've only worn once, and a few things I've never worn and know I never will wear. Books I haven't read is slightly different, but I definitely don't need any more books at the moment; but CDs I haven't listened to is just ridiculous, given that I can listen to CDs while doing other stuff.) The plan is to only buy things which are on my wishlist (not the Amazon wishlist or "Things I Love" or anything like that, just a generic wishlist). If I see something I want, I have to put it on my wishlist (which will be an actual file or, better, a piece of paper) before I can buy it. I suspect that if I have to make even that little effort, I'll actually just forget about the vast majority of things that I see and think "Oooh, shiny" about; mostly I buy them for short-term gratification, and it's getting to the stage where the long-term guilt (and ongoing lack of money situation!) definitely outweighs the short-term happiness.

I could ramble at some length here about the decadence of a society where people have to come up with complicated strategies to combat the I-want-it-all impulse; part of the problem, though, is that I don't think there's anything fundamentally wrong with wanting it all (either in material terms or more abstract terms) -- it's just rarely practical, affordable, sensible, or even possible. I also don't think that denying oneself the things one wants (assuming one can afford them, has space for them, and won't be harming anybody else by acquiring them) benefits anybody in and of itself. (There's an obvious extension to this bit of the argument, but I'm not really in the mood to go into it right now; for the time being let's just say that I'm aware it's there, and I'm thinking about it.)

The rain earlier was impressive; the sky was almost totally black, and even now it looks dark and brooding. I feel like I should say something about the clearing of the air, the breaking of the tension, or even the welcomeness of the water to the dry land; but in fact topmost in my mind at the moment is the worry of whether pto452's windscreen wipers will cope on the journey home.

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