Monday, December 3, 2012

A Matter of Stacking

Several times over the course of my blogging career I have mentioned the fact that I have a hard time starting new things. This has been true with my ever growing video game collection. Often times I have stated that I am not a player, but rather a collector as nothing ever gets played except what I have already started.

In previous posts, and normally I would offer a link but I'm not exactly which post covered it and I'm in a bit of a time crunch to get this written, I stated that one of the issues with starting something new is the unknown. Also, when I have more than one thing I could start I get stuck trying to figure out which one to do. Then, add a dozen or more things I could start and the answer has always been to go back to what I know. I think in a post I one time mentioned that I would stare at my collection for many minutes, stuck, and nothing would advance.

Then, last week, I decided to rearrange my games and DVD's. My games have always been stacked in a vertical fashion in an order that didn't have much logic except I tried to put the things I wanted to play/newer games to the top. I never thought that this system led to my issues, but after my switch I learned it might have been.

My switch led to going from the vertical stacking with little logic to a horizontal system. At first I kept the same limited logic to the order of the madness but after staring for a few minutes I decided to put some logic in the system so instead of trying to put things on the top that I thought I wanted to play I ordered everything into genres.

This switch may seem like a non-point, but the end result has been game-life altering. I would say life-altering but after all this is just recreation, but just that little switch has allowed me to start many different games I have been sitting on for a long time.

I've known that when I was in school and I was absent I'd always get a pile of work that needed to be done and this was crippling. Much like my vertical stacking method I would become overwhelmed and just stare at the pile wondering what to do and where to begin. I'd see everything at once and be unable to begin anything. Of course, this would make me want to avoid school the next day because I had all this work to do and then I'd get another pile of work that was added to the pile and it became a never ending cycle. With the switch though I now feel as if I am more control. Instead of organizing by trying to put things on top that were newer I now have a system that puts no merit on newness. This means I can chose by the genre that I feel like playing. Yes, there still is a choice to be made, but I no longer see every single game at once but rather the system now breaks it down and the choices become smaller.

Over the course of this year I've heard from many parents on systems similar to this that the presentation of material is so vital to avoiding the possible overwhelming nature of piles. This applies to much more than my video game collection or school work that may be due in the near future. Being 29 years of age as I am this is an aspect of life that is something that isn't thought of. I mean, it's something that, perhaps, I thought I grew out of or perhaps it no longer applies to me. However, and this is so often so, regardless of age Asperger Syndrome is there with me. It can be easy to forget the ways that it can affect life, but the relief of anxiety from my simple change in my system can not be overlooked.

As I said at the beginning, I'm in a bit of a time crunch today. I just arrived in Springfield, Missouri and have a lunch meeting then tomorrow I have two, three hour presentations at a conference here in Springfield. I hope my blog today made sense as the change has been so huge. Anyway, I must go, have a great day!


  1. I'm this way when I go to the job I have. There are just too many choices of things to do first. I got chewed out by a coworker the other night because of my indecisiveness--she would have called it something else--but maybe something you've said here will help me organize myself at work better. Wish I could be in Spfd. to hear you. I know you'll do great.

    1. I have a jobcoach. I don't have a job at the moment, because besides Asperger's I also have Chronic Fatigue, which is keeping me from being able to work.
      But I've had some jobs (until my Chronic Fatigue stopped me) and my inability to prioritise the tasks at hand was tackled by my jobcoach. When I worked at a bakery, she told my boss not to give me too many tasks at once.
      When I worked in administration, I would have some tasks that always needed doing and colleagues would have some tasks for me too. This worked like a pile too. My jobcoach made sure my boss would give me a list of the tasks in the order in which they need to be done. This took away the hard choice from me and I could just go through the list from top to bottom.
      Maybe this can help?

  2. This is a really good blog..fantastic thoughts!