Do you ever feel that you are sleepwalking through life, just going through the motions? Or as if you are rushing to get from one moment to the next? Ever since starting my first full time job, it feels like there simply aren’t enough hours in the day. Often I arrive to work an hour early to get a jump start on the day, only to come home ten hours later to an empty house and begin blogging over takeout food. By the time I drift off at night, I still end up feeling unfulfilled, like I didn’t do quite enough.And then the days turn into weeks, the weeks into months, the months into years. As I reflect back, I can’t help but feel I haven’t achieved nearly what I should have. And the startling truth is that time is a luxury, a limited resource of which you can’t get back or simply buy more.Surely I can’t be the only one? How do you feel about your life? Do you love what you’re doing? Or are you counting down until the weekend? Are you looking forward to the future? Or are you still caught up on the past? Are you living your best life?I tell myself I need to sloooow down and enjoy life. I need to close the laptop, put down the phone and be still. Be mindful and present in my everyday routine. It can be impossible to find balance when you’re crazy busy. But then again, what defines busy? Almost everyone I know is ‘busy’ But we’re busy because of our own ambition or drive or anxiety, because we’re addicted to busyness and dread what we might have to face in its absence. We fill our free time with activities, commitments and obligations. Sometimes we even feel guilty for not filling up our time. As though it means we’re lazy. Our frantic days are really just a hedge against emptiness. – Lily sheds light on the benefits of unstructured free time to eliminate stress
When was the last time you drove down to the beach and sat alone, listening to the waves crash onto the shore? Wafting in the salty air whilst watching the clouds roll by? Digging your toes into the sand as the sun went down? When is the last time you were truly still and content in your idleness?I think it is vital to take time to recharge and to rejuvenate our souls, cleansing our mind and body of harmful thoughts and toxins. Absorb life, and appreciate the little things. Failure to do so is asking for a crash and burn.
Idleness is not just a vacation, an indulgence or a vice; it is as indispensable to the brain as vitamin D is to the body, and deprived of it we suffer a mental affliction as disfiguring as rickets. The space and quiet that idleness provides is a necessary condition for standing back from life and seeing it whole. – The Busy Trap
Now imagine you are granted a break from your normal routine, six months to travel the world, free to go and do whatever you please. Where would you venture? Who would you invite along for the ride? What experiences would you seek out? Would you focus on the beautiful landscapes, the adventures, the people, the food or the activities?
Your answers to these questions can help show what you value most in life. Those activities you need to prioritize and make time for in your day to day to feel complete.Today I am choosing five areas which I want to focus my time and I encourage you to do the same! Position these goals at the intersection of your strengths, weaknesses, and passions so that you can’t help but better yourself and feel fulfilled with the outcome.
What does this look like for me?
- Blog/Photography: Having a side hustle on top of a 40-hour work week can be draining. I will spend my weekends busting out blog posts and practicing night photography rather than hungover in bed all day.
- Relationships: Take time for me and stop rushing from one relationship to the next, Focus on finding friends that I have more in common with than drinking (ie. Blogging, travel, tennis)
- Travel: Make the most of my four weeks annual leave, Plan an extended trip to Europe after two years of working before heading home from Australia.
- Career: Set an actionable development plan, Learn better time management skills to balance competing priorities, Soak in more technical and actuarial knowledge from my mentors.
- Health: Start a yoga/meditation class, Join a tennis league, Rock climbing on the weekends, Limit myself to one night of drinking a weekend, Start cooking healthy meals instead of takeout.
From this day forward, I vow to live more intentionally in my day to day. To allow for the luxury of time. To live fully in the moment and be present. Your life is something to be experienced, not coasted through aimlessly.Now how do you plan to spend the next 525,600 minutes you are blessed with this year?