My brother and girlfriend left town Wednesday night. Lots of low-limit holdem, as expected, and also two trips two Red Rock Canyon and one to Valley of Fire. We also saw Munich.
Before I went home for the holidays, my friends Aaron and Joe were in town. When I got back, I had my girlfriend and brother in town. So, it's been a couple of weeks since I've lived in my normal lifestyle. What is "normal"? I'm not quite sure, since I don't really have any sort of routine. Basically, I try to exercise and get one or two other things done each day, as well as playing at least a few hours of poker. Besides that it's pretty much just watching tv, playing video games, reading (mostly online news or books about poker), writing occasionally in this blog, and sleeping. The best part is that I rarely ever have to do anything on any given day if I don't want to, so I rarely have anything really to worry about. It also means that I have to be self-disciplined, something which I am not particularly good at, but I could be a lot worse (eg Aaron). My efforts to become more self-disciplined have been quite valuable to me personally. Up until my move to Vegas I had always been in school or had a job (like almost everyone else in the world), and my free time was generally geared towards trying to de-stress. Now that all of my time is essentially "free time," I am forced to evaluate what my personal priorities and try to set goals for myself - all those things that in the past had essentially been decided for me. I recently heard a quote from TomMcEvoy where he said he considers pro poker players to be "the last of the true free spirits." I don't know exactly what he means by that and it's almost certainly not quite true, but somehow that quote fits what I am trying to say here. Pro poker players truly are free-spirits; we have chosen an unorthodox means of supporting ourselves and we need not answer to anyone.
Observing what one chooses to do with one's time when one has no responsibilities is very revealing. Regardless of what I may be doing a year from now or ten years from now, I feel like this time is extremely valuable for purposes of self reflection... something that is probably particularly valuable for someone who found a normal 9-5 office job intolerable, despite the fact that it involved almost precisely his chosen field of study, and thus should presumably have been a satisfying career.
Other lifestyle improvements that have occured since my move to Vegas include flossing, exercising a bit more, drinking much less, and sleeping much better. Also, I'm better at poker now.