Time, an illusion
I feel like this week has gone by really fast, but at the same time really slowly. Sometimes I can’t tell. These days I feel like it’s a struggle to get through the entire week, and I just look forward to the weekend every time. I still love my job, but I have just been getting very tired lately. I’ve been on about it for a few months already, and it’s just that I think my trip to Indonesia last year has messed up my whole sleeping pattern and my schedule in general. I won’t lie, I’ve been getting to work on time in the past few weeks, but even then, it’s only about 75% of the time. I struggle finding time to make proper lunch and run for four kilometres in the morning, which makes me a little sad. I know that in time I’ll slowly ease back into it, and my body is probably just taking its sweet time regenerating whatever it’s regenerating… hopefully some cholesterol-kicking cells, because I still haven’t gone to the doctor to check up on my cholesterol.
It’s not a priority.
But it should be.
Since reading Are You As Busy As You Think?, an article by by Laura Vanderkam, I’ve been thinking that maybe I’m not as busy as I think (or tell people), and maybe I’m just wasting my time and not using my time efficiently. Laura says, “What I thought was a 60-hour workweek wasn’t even close. I would have guessed I spent hours doing dishes when in fact I spent minutes. I spent long stretches of time lost on the Internet or puttering around the house, unsure exactly what I was doing”. I can’t deny that I’ve felt this way as well, and I’ve probably just been deceiving myself all along. I do actually spend up to an hour chatting to my friends on my phone and texting when I get home from work. I do surf the internet on my phone before I actually get out of bed. Yes, that’s bad.
And yes, I know that’s a problem. I recognised this problem a long time ago, but it’s obvious I didn’t really do anything to remedy it. I signed up to Nicole’s monthly newsletter, in which she shares simple tips to create a “bullshit-free life”. Having started up Project Simplify Georgie, it’s awesome to see another blogger on the same wavelength, working towards a simpler, and, well — bullshit-free — life. In one of Nicole’s newsletters, she admitted that the first thing she used to do in the morning was check her email. She bought herself an actual alarm clock, and left her phone in another room overnight to ensure that she was physically incapable of checking her email from bed.
Back to Laura’s article. To remedy this time-wasting business, she used a timer and timed herself when it came to tasks and working, so she could see how much time she really spent. Additionally, she was just honest. Honest about the time she spent and how much free time she had. Above all, the game-changing thing was to change her language, and instead of saying “I don’t have time”, to say, “It’s not a priority”.
I have time to iron my sheets, I just don’t want to. But other things are harder. Try it: ‘I’m not going to edit your résumé, sweetie, because it’s not a priority.’ ‘I don’t go to the doctor because my health is not a priority.’ If these phrases don’t sit well, that’s the point. Changing our language reminds us that time is a choice. If we don’t like how we’re spending an hour, we can choose differently.
Earlier this week, Cal sent me to a Max Design workshop for responsive web design (RWD), presented by Russ Weakley of Max Design. I know I have some knowledge in RWD, but it was great to go to this workshop and brush up on my current knowledge. Russ was great teacher and he made the workshop more enjoyable. It comes with stark contrast to university classes, where teachers are usually sitting there, not keen on what they’re teaching, or not even specialised in what they do. This, I realise, is what makes me as a student, dislike some subjects. Teachers show so very little enthusiasm in what should be passionate to them. That’s pretty much it. If you’re just reading from a slide, what is that? Teachers have the knowledge and experience. They should share experiences, what research they did or where they went that brought them to this point, or how they, themselves, learned. I highly doubt that people learned everything they know just from reading a book or listening to someone stand at a podium. We learn from real-life experiences, no matter how small or big.
So, yeah, who am I kidding, as I open my mouth to whine about how there’s not enough time to do my homework? I know I went out for dinner with Johnny and Fern on Tuesday night, and we walked and hung out around Glebe for the night. I know I was up until 3am working on a new responsive design for my portfolio. I know I slept all of yesterday afternoon, going into some strange kind of hibernation mode.
Time to re-think things a little.