Time on My Hands

It’s a strange concept, the idea of too much time. In our world, we are constantly rushing from one task to another, barely pausing to breathe. Even our free time is rigidly scheduled so we can fit in all the things we want to do. There is always something to be done, and we even feel guilty for truly taking a break and letting it all slide. It seems to me to be rather unhealthy.

But there is another extreme. If we can be too busy, then we can also be not busy enough. This is where I have found myself lately. Instead of never having time to do the things I want to, I have too much of it. Too much free time. Essentially, it means I no longer have structure in my life. There are no limits. It doesn’t matter if I don’t get something done today, because I can do it tomorrow. It’s not like I have anything else going on.

This is the running theme in my head lately – it’s not like I have anything else going on. Hell, I even say it to people when they want to make plans. It’s actually a rather disparaging remark. And I mean it that way. It comes across in my voice, my posture, my eye roll – I have nothing going on. I’m not good enough. I’m not like the rest of you.

When I first got laid off a little over a month ago, I was both devastated and thrilled. I really like security and continuity in my life, and while unemployment helps, it isn’t enough. I’m barely scraping by, and that mostly thanks to help from others. But I do try to look on the bright side, and this has a big one – time to finally do all the things I’ve been wanting to do. All those things I never had time for – I can do them now. There’s nothing stopping me, nothing standing in my way.

But there is something in the way. Apathy, I suppose. Yes, I have all the time in the world to do whatever I want. That’s great. But I have no motivation. No directives. No limits. There’s nothing that says today is the only day I have to work on this. Sure, I could get a job at any time – and believe me, I’m trying. And yes, if I get a job and I haven’t finished all the things I wanted to do while I had the time, I will be supremely annoyed. But it just doesn’t feel that pressing. It doesn’t feel important. This is why it’s taken me over a month to do even half the things I meant to do in the first two weeks. It started with the fact that I felt I had earned a break. Boy, did I ever earn it. Worked my ass off, and got nothing for it. So I took a break. And now, I barely manage to be productive for  half a day out of any given three. Truly, it’s more depressing than not having enough time was.

So once again, I will try. I’ve made myself this promise half a dozen times in the last few weeks. Today, I’m sharing it with the world. Maybe it’ll give me some accountability. I will try. I will make the effort, every day, to get something done. Something productive. Something I can cross off this damn list that has been taunting me with my inadequacies.

I will prove to myself I am better than I have been behaving recently.

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