Saturday, September 28, 2013

Day 55 of 365: Positioning

I fully recognize how lucky we are to have found a house large enough to have essentially two "family rooms". We have a room to the right of the foyer, and then we have the addition off to the side with its lovely vaulted ceilings. Our room off to the right has this incredible built-in entertainment system, with shelves upon shelves that were most likely meant for DVDs. We decided that, given our vast collections of books, the shelves would used for books instead. We dragged three of our bookshelves into the room, lined them against two of the walls, and called the room our "library".

The library has exactly three pieces of furniture (not including the built-in): two medium-sized bookshelves, one tall bookshelf, a beanbag chair, and an old wood-and-cloth loveseat. This leaves a lovely bit of space in the center of the room. Right now, it is essentially our exercise room: where we feebly try P90X and where I unabashedly practice my swordplay. When we have kids, the bookcases will disappear and replaced with toy chests and children's book baskets. But, until then, it's our workout room.

This is also where I house my laptop. Way back, when I lived in the Boston area, I had my laptop on a desk, like I was back in a dorm room. When we moved to Nashua, my desk became a fixture in our guest/crafts/library/office room (aka the second bedroom), and my laptop found a lovely home on our couch.

The problem with my laptop being on the couch was that it was too easily accessible. Boring part in a show? Let me check my email. Resting on the couch? Why not rest and update Facebook? It didn't matter if I was missing entire show segments, or that my "rest" really wasn't restful. My desire to multi-task outweighed everything else.

When we started packing (and stopped using our dining room table for actual eating), I forced myself to move the laptop to the table. And, downright instantly, I felt a complete change in how I went about my laptop. I went to my laptop with purpose. I was going to update this blog, or email a potential client, or work on my latest manuscript. Or: I was going to watch a copious amount of Huffington Post videos, or look at adorable cat pictures, or lurk on old boyfriends' pages.

I tried out several new places for my laptop when we moved to the house. The dining room table was off limits, as we were back to using it for meals (and with more frequency than we did at the apartment). I wanted it no where near the couch, and I also wanted it no where near the bedroom (as anyone with advice on insomnia will tell you, putting something as mentally stimulating as a computer in a bedroom is a sure way to confuse your brain into what areas are "sleep areas").

I realized how perfect the library was after my first round of morning yoga. The library/micro-gym was also where I housed my yoga mats, and there was something so peaceful about facing the windows and the rising sun and acting out a sequence that I had found online. Immediately after, I sat down on the loveseat and started the rest of my morning routine: blog writing, query submitting, Lumosity game-playing (because, so long as I'm not paying, why not?).

The library is also a place of very little distractions. I have books, I have shelves, and I have open space. That's about it. I can look at the pictures hung on the wall, or I can gaze off into nothing. There's no fridge for me to scrounge through. There's no immediate access to a television set (as our TV is hidden away in the confines of the built-in). Nothing to distract me from the goals of the day.

So this is where I'm located now. If I'm on my laptop -- especially if I'm writing for this blog -- it's in my little library, sitting in the loveseat in a little cove made by a corner of the room and the end of the built-in.

Environment is everything. It affects our behavior, our mood, even our way of thinking. I was always the student who needed to go to the library to study, so it makes sense that I'm the type of adult who needs to go to a (much lesser version of a) library to write and go online.

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