Doing the work you want to instead of have to

“I should go to bed, trying to run linear regression on trillions of data points past midnight is not a good idea.”

When was the last time you voluntarily stayed up late just to get something done? Not out of obligation but because you personally wanted to do it?

Was there ever anything you loved doing so much that you’d be willing to stay up late just to do more of it? Not in the sense of binge-watching Netflix but in the sense of doing or creating something. Maybe a song, or a poem, or generating a best-fit line to a trillion data points to see if there’s any correlation, or woodworking. Or maybe your day job?

Yeah, I can hear some people laughing right now, and I don’t think they’re the type to enjoy their work. But nevertheless, there must be something you enjoy creating, something you can spend hours on without noticing.

For me, I love a good challenge. Ideally, something I can put my hands on. Sometimes, I dismantle stuff and try to put it back together. Sometimes, I tinker with my fountain pens and tried grinding their nibs. A long time ago, I would spend hours trying to solve the problems in Project Euler, which was back when I was still programming.

But looking back at my past few months, I don’t think I’ve done much of anything like that. The only thing that comes to mind is probably writing, but for some reason, it looks like I’m slowly losing interest recently. Maybe this is some kind of sign?

Looking back at my posting history, it seems like I would inevitably go on a hiatus every few months and the longest continuous stretch of daily posting is only about half a year, which is my current streak. Maybe it is time for another break or something? Well, we’ll see.

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