Is it a good time to make easy changes?

“Are you Allie?” A woman I’d seen temporarily filling the office’s front desk asked. I nodded. “I have a package for you.” She disappeared for a moment only to return with a box that could have easily fit a flat screen TV. It was my new desk. My new standing desk. Yes, apparently, the newest hires managed to persuade the powers that be into experimenting with new-fangled equipment in hopes of making us all more productive, happier people.

(I am both intrigued and alarmed at this video of an office that takes the term rat race a bit too literally)

The box remained in the corner of my office unopened. I knew once those seals were broken, there would be no turning back. The box seemed to stare at me as if aware of my thoughts. Don’t you care about your health, it seemed to ask. I do, I thought back in reply, it’s just that I enjoy sitting down too.

Change. It’s never comfortable. Is it?

Eventually, I succumbed and cut through the packing tape, my inborn need to keep my work area relatively clutter free outweighing the fear of the change the box represented. The entire thing slid out in one piece. Darn it, there goes my excuse to procrastinate set-up due to assembly.

Within minutes my workstation was online. Taking a deep breath, I found hidden handles underneath the desk. Then, with a squeeze, my workspace rose. And rose. And rose. I pushed my chair backwards and grit my teeth. Here goes nothing. I started to work. I originally intended to work for only a few minutes, but then return the desk back to its ‘seated’ position. I would ease into this change. But a glance at the clock informed me that an hour passed.

A bit later, my feet began to ache. I shifted my weight. I could have sat back down, but instead decided to go for a walk around the office if only to see how the others might be coping. The funny thing was none of them were at their desks either. Where had everyone gone? I wondered. I pulled up my calendar. Was I missing a meeting? No. By heavens! It was lunch time. The insidious device had tricked me into working into the lunch hour. The horror! I quickly fled my office to find sustenance as no one likes me hungry. No one. I don’t even think my children like me when I am hungry.

But it got me thinking. I’d accomplished quite as a result of that one simple change.

Fall is once again almost upon us, bringing with it, more change. School is once again in session, the faintest hint of red is beginning to show on the leaves outside my window and I have managed to drive more than once with the air conditioning off and the windows open. Change doesn’t have to be a bad thing.

In fact, it can be quite healthy from time to time.

Earlier this summer, dismayed by my lack of progress and bullied by fans (just kidding Eric – I am grateful for each and every one of your friendly reminders to get back to work), I decided to change how I managed my writing goals by teaming up with another writer. The idea was we’d help each other stay on track in order to complete our various writing projects, preferably before the end of this century.

I expected I’d be better about hitting my goals, but what I didn’t expect was exactly how helpful this simple change has been. I’ve doubled my weekly word count since we started (or tripled compared to some weeks). While I have yet to write the words “End of Book Two” in my current work in progress, I am overjoyed to say it has an ending (if you are interested in either beta reading or becoming an advance reviewer when the time comes, be sure to let me know).

Unfortunately (at least for me), my accountability partner has grown overly fond of our current rate of success and is forcing me to make other changes. Like actually telling people when The Fair & Foul will be available for free download (September 8th – 12th). Or the fact that I’ve been invited to be a guest on Speculative Fiction Cantina radio show on September 23rd (details to follow).

“Change is inevitable–except from a vending machine.” -Robert C. Gallagher

If change is inevitable, then the least I can do it try to lead the change rather than let it lead me. These small changes I’ve made, and the ones I make tomorrow, may not seem much to you, but a year from now, I will look back and know they made all the difference.

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26 thoughts on “Is it a good time to make easy changes?

  1. Great post, Allie, with some wise advice. To me, summer is always about keeping up and trying to juggle all the balls. Autumn brings a little more free time and a great opportunity for a tune up, a time of assessment and change. A good thing 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. So have u kept the standing desk? Can you really stand for 8 hours a day???? Id love a standing desk but have no clue how I would cope. I like the idea of a treadmill desk though.

    Also – Wowza, your accountability partner must be off the chart amazing – that’s quite some word count increase. Bet you shower them in praise and never bully them at all.

    I am a change addict! I love it. Love a fresh start, love trying something new, especially new notebooks 😂. Change is usually a good thing or at least I’ve always found it to be a good thing.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I have kept it. I don’t stand for the full 8 hours. It’s an adjustable model that sits above my regular desk. I’m really liking it thus far though.

      Yeah, she’s certainly something! But I dare not mention her by name or like others that shall not be named, she may appear and give me more goals to achieve by the end of the week 😋, or at minimum increase next week’s by a factor of 10. Additionally, I expect she would tell me that I should be writing rather than responding to comments, so it is a good thing she doesn’t know about this post.

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  3. “(I am both intrigued and alarmed at this video of an office that takes the term rat race a bit too literally)” Laughing out loud at this.

    Yeah, change is inevitable. It’s weird, but I actually kind of like this. It’s really neat. I would think it would be excellent for your physical and mental health to not be sitting on your ass all day. I stand at my desk as it is because of my back but this…this is weird and really cool. I can’t make up my mind. Although anything that causes you to miss lunch is evil. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, the almost working through lunch part was a definite sign of something that is not to be trusted. However, it has become a bit of a game for me to see how long I can go without sitting. If I can make it all the way to lunch, I consider it a win for the day (which then puts me in a good mood for the afternoon). I’ve also found that I am not nearly as affected by the erratic weather patterns that are my office’s thermostat settings. Some of my co-workers suggested that is because hot air rises, but I remind them that my standing height isn’t all that different than my sitting height, so there has to be more at play then simply hot air.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. OK, this is great, because just yesterday my boss sent out this same video and joked about his new desk! I think it’s a great idea personally. It would be a little hard to type and walk at the same time, but man, we’d all be healthy and fit!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I didn’t realize your boss was a fan of mine, as he couldn’t possibly have stumbled across that video any other way. How exciting! 🙂

      I think watching the wooden planks go by would give me motion sickness, so my hamster wheel would have to be made of clear Plexiglas in order to keep me productive.

      I can barely talk and walk at the same time so typing and walking together would be a feat.

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  5. It’s so interesting that you blogged about the standing desk because I was recently looking it and debating if it’s a good investment or not. I spend too much of my life sitting down (even though I love to sit, don’t get me wrong, but my body demands otherwise), and the fact that your standing desk made you work into your lunch hour is shocking! (Work > Food? I can’t even process that LOL).

    Liked by 1 person

  6. That video!! I, too, am both intrigued and alarmed.

    My hubby had a stand-up desk at his new office when we arrived here, but it wasn’t adjustable. He’s switched it back to a sit down desk because he decided he didn’t like it. We both like sitting on a yoga ball at our desk. We don’t use those proper desk chairs, but we both love the yoga ball.

    Glad your word count is up and that your accountability partner is so awesome. I remember having a critique group when I lived in Michigan and then again when I lived in Korea. I loved those guys and they were so good at keeping me accountable and productive. I need to get a group like that going here in China. . . I took the summer off and am having trouble getting back into the swing of things. I recently mapped out my timeline and (self-imposed) deadlines for the various projects I want to complete. That alone was pretty motivating and exciting.

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    • She truly is awesome, even if she does call me out for trying to sneak by with easy to meet goals on a regular basis.

      I don’t think I would like a full-time standing desk either. The yoga ball as a chair sounds intriguing. I, however, would be tempted to treat it as a hippity-hop which might not do wonders for the whole air of authority I have going for me in the office.

      Liked by 1 person

      • When I was in Korea, the MS principal got a standing desk and I told him how using a yoga ball was so much better….he said that though it might very well be better, there was something about standing up from a yoga ball to greet a visiting patent that didn’t settle too well with him. I guess I agree. I don’t have any formal meetings in my office so it works for me. And the occasional fun bounce on the ball is a good distraction at times 😄.

        Liked by 1 person

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