Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Ideal Day vs. Reality

I'm kind of intrigued by the concept behind Lifehacker: there is an efficient, optimal way for every human being to conduct each and every task, and the sum of which is a life lead efficiently and optimally, and therefore, the best possible way.  I kind of envision a bunch of GE engineering Six-Sigma buzzword-spouting wonks were sitting around, having beers, discussing their Black Belt status, and said, "Fuck!  We could do this in life!"  (For those who have no idea what I just said, google it, or sit next to three first-year MBA students for five minutes, and you'll get the idea... inefficiency is bad, so we should minimize it.  Crazy concept, right?  Yeah... that's kind of what business education is: take something from the social sciences - econ, poli sci, english - and package these elementary concepts in new terms and acronyms known only to business majors, and call it finance, management, and marketing.)

However, in between looking at how to turn my desk chair into a computer stand and food storage basics for the kitchen, I started to think about what my ideal day would look like.  A day where everything gets done on time, I'm well rested, and I even eat well and exercise.  This is what I came up with:

6:00 - Wake up
6:05 - Yoga
6:25 - Shower
6:35 - Breakfast of homemade granola, organic local yogurt, and pesticide-free berries picked from a wild patch of berries known only to myself and the angels who bathed the berries with light and sunshine.  Also, fair-trade, organic, strong black coffee hand-picked by a woman's cooperative in Ethiopia that benefits a community foundation that provides drinking water and schools to the village, and roasted in Ohio by a social services organization that aids in the transition of former prisoners to full-time employment with a proven track record of lowered recidivism rates.
6:45 - Dress
6:50 - Pack lunch, bag, etc.
7:00 - Hop on bicycle for 3.5 mile ride to work.
7:30 - Arrive at work, on time, cool, collected, somehow unsweaty
12:00 - Lunch of fruits and vegetables and locally made artisenal cheeses, along with a sandwich of peanut butter and jelly, both of which were made by hand in my kitchen.
12:30 - Return to work
4:00 - Finished with work, I head to the gym for an hour of cardio, or 30/30 cardio and strength training
5:30 - Do something educational or mentally stimulating to engage my brain in lifelong learning
7:00 - Attend an event for a community organization that is actively working towards making a more just, verdent, and/or peaceful world.
8:00 - Dinner.  Something vegan, cause I'm now committed to sustainable agriculture now.  Or I just read a Michael Pollan book.
8:30 - Write meaningful correspondence with a beloved friend who I don't nearly see often enough.
8:45 - Continue to further my mental growth by watching some quality PBS show or read a great novel.
10:00 - Bed

What Really Happens:
6:30 - Alarm goes off - followed by snooze
7:10 - Realize I hit the off button instead of the snooze, Try to run to the shower before fully awake, and fall on the ground
7:12 - Finally get to the bathroom
7:20 - Get dressed, hastily dry hair
7:30 - Get ready to leave, realize I forgot something.
7:35 - Finally grab car keys, purse, phone, etc, and run out the door
7:45 - Get to work, have to park in the far lot
7:55 - Get to work 25 minutes late.
12:30 - Realize that I forgot to pack a lunch or eat breakfast.  Try to decide between having can of soup or running to food court for a salad.
12:35 - Get to food court - buy mini pizza
12:40 - Eat at desk
4:15 - Still making up time for being late this morning...
4:30 - Too late to go to gym, I start raiding desk for that granola bar I know was around somewhere....
5:30 - Head to class to learn something, but no one (including instructor) wants to be there.  Minimal learning happens.
7:00 - Ditch community meeting.  Screw the whales and the owls: I'm burning gas today!
7:15 - Starving, It's McDonald's Drive-Thru time!
7:30 - Regret.
7:35 - FarmVille
7:45 - Watch things off the DVR.
9:00 - Stalk a couple college friends on Facebook.
9:30 - Change into sweats
10:00 - Start writing a blog post.  Or, buy some stuff off woot.
10:30 - Ice Cream
11:00 - Daily Show
11:30 - Colbert Show
11:45 - Holy crap!  What am I doing up so late?  Go to bed, vowing to get to bed at 10 the next day to get up on time.

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