Happy Bubble Time


Feb 18, 2012 https://davidseah.com/2012/02/happy-bubble-time/ I described a feeling of having too many things to do and not having done anything. My own projects are all equally urgent (and therefore none of them are). I feel dissatisfied, but am not sufficently motivated to work because (1) unknown rewards are not compelling and (2) unknown time commitment feels too much get that unknown reward and (3) the desire to have immediate reward puts mind into optimization mode, which has no obvious starting point and (4) there is no one else with my specific desire or with equal buy-in to the mission.

Result: stuck. this is one of my forms of resistance.

I also know from experience that a lot of my best work came from screwing around when I was NOT concerned about any of that stuff, but was driven more by curiosity. Alternative, I can get into that mode when I just put all those uncertainties out of my mind so the only thing left is A QUESTION of HOW or WHAT, and then the inquiry project (taskless and timeless) begins. The result is knowledge, which diminishes uncertainty and create a path that I couldn’t see before.

I think of this as getting into a “happy bubble”, and it doesn’t have to be long. It is what I do when I’m procrastinating by researching more interesting subjects (as opposed to procrastinating by binging media). THOUGHTFUL procrastination rather than MINDLESS procrastination.

It just takes me being able to isolate my mind from the other dreck, and sticking in the room with one question that leads to another, and amassing knowledge. In a more directed form, the question is chosen to direct the energy toward a suspected vein of desired material.

Feb 18, 2012 https://davidseah.com/2012/02/happy-bubble-time-ii/

How to turn an unpleasant chore into HBT? The “one thing at a time” mantra is accurate but not informative. In cleaning the kitchen, I recognized that the performance of any starting task would result in the gathering of data if I was mindful of it. This is the “make everything a game” mentality, but less dogmatic. I could trust myself to apply the insights to create a more optimal way of doing it, and to characterize the task in such a way that I could be more certain about it (time taken to do, improvement noted afterwards).

Some chores are repeating, so the time taken helps make a more certain assessment of the tradeoff between time and result. Before, not knowing the time, I couldn’t easily make that assessment.

In HBT, when the focus is CLEAR and TRUE, this is the FLOW STATE. But when the focus is broken or boredom arises, then it requires extra mindfulness to stay on track. HBT might work best as an EXCEPTION to work, and there is a subtle difference between DIRECTED BUBBLE TIME (DBT) and HAPPY BUBBLE TIE (HBT).

Feb 19, 2012 https://davidseah.com/2012/02/happy-bubble-time-iii/

I noted the distinction between work and happy bubble time here too. The idea is the bubble of isolation.

A lack of pressure helps contribute to productive happy bubble time. Pressured time requires a different kind of bubble (focus by being free of distraction, rather than a sheer exertion of willpower)

I noted that a good attitude is essential for happy bubble time. And looking for a way to turn dull tasks into some kind of datapoint also helps. The experimenter’s attitude.

A peculariaty I have is that I enjoy making systems, and acquiring the knowledge that makes me able to form systems and systematically understand.

I also like surprise knowledge and unexpected insights I had not imagined.

Some chores are unpleasant and just take time. THe bubble gambit is being certain that a good result is a few minutes to an hour away (manufacturing certainty based on past experience measures), and that this can drive further progress (the 15 minute rule)

I like making systems or finding ways that will make a task that should be done well EASIER next time I have to do it.

HBT and WBT is about working through the problem, allowing myself the time it takes to just push through it and let my mind gather information and react to it. The difference is that I arrange a steady supply of quite minor triggers for my mind, which is highly efficient at turning them into full-blown inquiries and structuring that knowledge.

Mar 13, 2012 https://davidseah.com/2012/03/happy-bubble-time-concept/

I describe HBT officially. Equal parts obsessive interest and focus. Happy = fulfillment of obsessive interest. Bubble = focus by forgetting everything else exists

Having a lot of HBT is important to my well being. You could describe it as a lifelong interest in learning, self improvement, and making interesting things.

Elements are described: * It’s not the desire to be lazy. It’s the desire to have a serene, undemanding lifestyle. * It’s about having the focus, time and capability to produce good things…without pressure or guilt. * It’s a sense of enjoyment, freedom, and having permission to play without worry, for at least a little while. * It’s productive, because the result of true HBT is something new that you can show to people. If you haven’t learned or made something new, it’s not HBT.

Similar to flow:

[…] the mental state of operation in which a person in an activity is fully immersed in a feeling of energized focus, full involvement, and success in the process of the activity.

HBT is my personal formula for flow. The goose that lays the golden eggs, but don’t know what’s inside. I feel unburdened to explore and create, thanks to the bubble.

I have to make room for it regularly. I am an impulsive dreamer with messy habits, content to ignore it unless something pressures me into having to confront it. The secret to my work-life balance is to be able to make room for and be in HAPPY BUBBLE TIME. It is the way I learn and create.

HBT 15m strtup leads to hours of learning HBT is unpredictable in time and result, but still produces results