Time is overrated. Not that we don’t appreciate the time we have, but we think we need to utilize every single second. It seems like constantly being productive, is the best way to capitalize on our time. A revelation I’ve had is that the best way to utilize time is to sit down and do nothing. Not forever, but frequently. Just stop and sit down and do absolutely nothing but live.
To appreciate the moment and recognize how good some of us have it we need to step back.
Doing nothing doesn’t equate to lazily playing video games all the time. I’m talking about a simplified observation of everything around you. I’m talking about disregarding responsibilities to your job and facebook feeds for an intentional moment. Take a moment and just reflect on everything around you, attempt to find something more in what you have already.
And I know this sounds corny. It’s the typical hippy shit that people scoff at, but it’s an engaging way of experiencing life. Because when you don’t focus on doing everything all the time, an alleviation of pressure takes place. You start being a part of life instead of just going through it.
Without taking the time to not think, each moment when you’re walking the dog is saturated with thoughts about doing the 15 dishes in the sink, what book you should read and if you’ll have time to make dinner. It’s as if you’re experiencing life with a crappy blindfold over your eyes; you’re never fully seeing what is in front of you.
I don’t want this to feel like I’m preaching. I’m not trying to say, “come into the light and experience euphoria,” but I do want to express that staying focused what you could be doing makes life a lot more stressful and doesn’t increase productivity.
When I worry about the papers I could be writing or the knowledge I could be gaining my present experience suffers. When I try and think about the opportunity cost of everything life become worse. I’m not figuring out what I should be doing, I’m just making what I am doing less engaging and fun. For example, when I’m with an acquaintance I don’t usually spend time with I’ll sometimes long to hang out with a different person and thus I don’t even give myself the chance to fully be with that acquaintance. I don’t make the most out of my time with that person and I waste my commitment to meet up with them in the first place.
When I’m talking to my friend Tony and he’s blabbering on about how his dog, whose name is Frankie is going crazy and he can’t seem to get him to calm down I’m probably not going to be listening. I’ll be blankly staring at Tony and be wishing I was somewhere else. Acting like that doesn’t solve anything. I don’t make the most out of my time with him.
I hate it when I’m stuck with people that know they want to be somewhere else. If I’m out with somebody who appreciates being in a space, no matter the situation, I feel better. The eye contact is there, the interesting back-and-forth develops and it’s engaging.
We can all be the person who loves being wherever he or she is. Simply by enjoying life our positive impact on others increases.
This is not new information. We’ve all seen the articles and studies that point to happiness spreading and meditation (an exercise in being present) as a way to lessen stress and increase well-being. Nobody needs to hear a study in order to know that stress f**king blows, and that working under stress makes for a temporary living hell. Somehow all this information kind of gets thrown under the rug, the primacy of happiness gets overshadowed by a cultural emphasis of executing in order to get money and buy things.
Anyhow, I feel winded and like my point has been made. Feel the moment, experience it and ignore the idea that focusing on problems that you can’t do anything about. People love being with others who are content with exactly where they are.
There may be some fairly large breaks in any content for the time being. I’m going to focus more on producing some solid journalism and as much as I love blogging it’s hard to sit down and hash out something worthwhile. So though I’m not saying goodbye to this blog I just want to say that I’ll be away from it for a little while. – Troy