Sunday, October 19, 2014

Am I Trying To Do Too Much At Once?... NAAAAH!

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

Looking back on these last few months, I've started to take on what some may consider to be an overwhelming number of personal projects as of late; some on my own, and some with small groups of people. They range from all sorts of different things like music, to programming and developing. I work a 9-to-5 job (well, technically an 8:30-to-5 job) with an commute of about an hour and fifteen minutes there and back. I'm usually more than tired by the time I get home, but I've found some ways to counter this and keep up with some of goals. Funny enough, that's also the result of another goal of mine.

First and foremost, my biggest drive as of late has been learning to exercise more. This is the first time in my life I've ever really taken on consistent exercise (with the exception of when I used to do Tae Kwon Do, but I was much younger then). As a type-1 diabetic, I have to make sure that my blood sugar levels are within good ranges every day to keep healthy and prevent any possible internal damage that could come as a result of poor management. While my diet has been generally fine for the most part, my blood sugar numbers have not. I could list a million reasons for why this is (work stress, private life stress, lack of motivation, lack of exercise, poor self-esteem, etc.), but that's not what this post is about. I could also talk about the fact that depression and depressive symptoms have become more common among type-1 diabetics, but again, that's not what this is about. I suppose that eventually, I got so sick of being down on myself, that I knew I had to change things. I just didn't realize what an impact it could possibly have on me if I did.

I began a small exercise routine. A friend of mine at work encouraged me to start taking walks outside of the building during our break time, so I eventually did. Just talking with someone about work and life while stepping outside was one thing, but the walking also changed something in me. It was as if everything suddenly felt less hazy than before, and I couldn't believe it. After all, it was just a small walk outside during the middle of the day, right? Well, I'm not so sure about that. I immediately started to feel more confidence in just about everything I was doing, whether it be work or other goals. I began reflecting on all of the things I wanted (and still want) to do with my life, and realized that the only one who's ever stopped me from doing all of these things is myself, and my lack of confidence. I could point the finger at all the mental bullying I used to experience, my height, or that I was convinced (or maybe just convinced myself) that there were all sorts of things that other people got lucky on; things that someone like me could never and would never accomplish.

I don't know what ever gave me this train of thought, but that's long dead and I will never let it come back.

I started to increase that exercise routine to outside of work as well. As soon as I get home, instead of just sitting down and making myself tired, I do crunches and situps, along with some lifting. I don't do this in some great amount, but again, it's left an impact. Over time doing this, I can definitely see the difference in my appearance and posture. My arms have started to slowly get bigger, and I'm starting to look like I could even reach that "six-pack abs" territory someday. That alone is something I never believed to be possible. There's a million other things I've always wanted to do in my life that I believed I was never cut out for. Instead of thinking I can't, I just think about HOW those things can be done instead; realistically. Below is a list of just some of the things I've got planned to accomplish, and how I've started to go about them:

Game Development - I've been learning with Game Maker and the GML language first. I am also planning to start learning Unity and more C# to use in conjunction with it. I'm familiar with object-oriented programming through Java, C/++, and Visual Basic, so the fundamentals behind all of these are relatively the same.

Music Writing and Composition - While learning the basics of guitar (and still intending to pursue it further), I always felt like the drums were my true calling. I finally saved up enough in order to buy myself a decent starter set, and am now working on saving up for cymbal stands and actual cymbals. I practice in little bits for now (and am mostly practicing motions and timing, before jumping into more complicate fills and signatures).

Web Series (Infinite Lives) - My friend and I have completed 1 episode (which was partially damaged, but we are in the act of recovering), and have almost completed another episode. Once this is complete, we will try to setup a website and a Youtube account to host it. We're very excited to show it and hope others will enjoy it as much as we enjoyed making it.

Podcast (8-Bit Knights) - My friends and I started this podcast a long time ago, and slowly drifted away from it for multiple reasons (we were all extremely busy and going through some major life changes). We finally began to bring this back, and now have two podcasts recorded. I am working on the new website to host it as we speak. We will all try to record for this podcast every week or two.

Writing (Project Sword) - I've had a storyline in my head for many years (mainly as a game, but also possible as a novel/movie/comic/etc.). I want to finally bring this story out of my head and into words for others to finally experience. I'm done automatically thinking it's "not good enough" in my head. There's no sense in worrying about what could be instead of making it a reality and seeing the results for yourself. I've written about 13 chapters so far, and intend to get back to this more soon.

Science - Carl Sagan's "Cosmos" and Stephen Hawking's "A Brief History of Time" absolutely enthralled me. I used to believe I was never smart enough to truly get into sciences (and difficulty with Calculus only furthered that thought process), but over the years, I began asking myself "Why not?" Who the hell says I can't learn everything there is to learn and break out into the world to become the next Sagan, Hawking, Tyson, Einstein, or even Newton? I was the one who said that. No more.

Conventions - It's no secret that I absolutely love going to different conventions every year (AnimeNEXT and New York Comic Con to name the obvious). There's a million different fandoms that you could say I'm a part of, and this also inspires me to one day possibly host of a convention of my own, whether it be a "Comic Con" or something else. I only just started reading about how to make something like that possible, as well as the costs involved (and trust me when I say you just don't want to know those costs!). It's a little more difficult than some of the things I listed above, but still very reachable.

These are just some of the many things I'd like to pursue and move forward with. And I'm sure anyone reading this has just as many great ideas that they can bring to the table. What I'm really learning is that we're the only ones really holding ourselves back from it however. We could point fingers at all kinds of things and say it's because of all of those, but laying blame isn't going to get us anywhere; it's working around those things that hold us back and making the impossible, possible.

To anyone reading this now, I'd like to know what kind of goals you have in your own lives. What dreams would you like to pursue, and what do you believe may hold you back from living them?

As always, I thank everyone for taking the time to read this, and hope to hear from you soon!


  1. Wow, I had no idea you were doing so much Justin-sensei. I think that's what I admire about you: you never settle. You always seek out things that you want to do and accomplish. I'm very guilty of holding myself back and not looking elsewhere to pursue other goals or dreams. Right now I'm actually writing on hubpapges. It's a content writing site, and so far I have 5 articles published. I've always wanted to do video game journalism.

  2. That's great Kyoko! I was thinking about doing the same once before, but it was another one of those things I believe I just put out of my mind because I never thought I'd be able to get there. And I was in the exact same spot as you, so I completely understand. I'm glad to hear you're taking steps to fulfill your own dreams as well, and I wish you the best in getting there!

  3. Thanks Justin-sensei. It'll feel good to get out of retail and start living more for a change. I know that I can do it.