Coming from a capitalist country, if there’s one thing I know more by the day, it’s that our society is driven by the need to be productive at work, and to keep up a lifestyle of efficiency, and high standard.
From my childhood, it was engraved in me that in order to fit in, I needed to keep up with school, be social, and join after school clubs. This I did until my teens, where my erratic PMT, bullying from one specific cow, and extreme family drama involving substance abuse left me with depression, anxiety, and self-esteem as rock bottom as the basement of a house.
Despite this, I always looked for ways to fill the void, whether that be
- Learning the keyboard
- Joining a band (or two)
- Learning guitar
- Attempting to strengthen the Christian beliefs I had at the time
- Write novels
- Draw manga.
This list goes on, but the point is that these weren’t just interests- they were fixations and phases I had to 1. Escape reality, and 2. Feel like I’m actually a useful person in society. To this day, I struggle with these internalised thoughts.
If I reflect on what’s on my agenda in life, as of today they are.
- My full time job in Payroll.
- My volunteering in the mental health sector (2-4 hours a week).
- Keeping up with this blog.
- Ensure the house is maintained (clean, we have food, and supplies in the house)
- Maintain my relationship with my boyfriend, my family, and friends.
- Keep up with my social media accounts (e.g. Twitter & Instagram).
Even with all the above that are on my agenda, I often sit on my sofa, feeling as though if I have a movie night, or I’m playing a video game, that I’m wasting valuable time. This obsessive aspect of my brain I understand comes from my Generalised Anxiety Disorder- which likes to focus on the biggest fear I have – failure. Failure to hit the goals that I have set myself, the fear that when I am old- that my life wasn’t what I wanted it to be, and the failure to be as good at the rest of society (I 99% blame social media for this train of thought).
It’s a very strange way of thinking, but I see this more commonplace with my friends. If I look at what I have from a completely objective lens, and if I even think about my own life satisfaction, I am happy, and I have good things. This is what matters at the end of the day, and not the fact that “Oh I wasted 2 hours playing a video game”, because actually- I had a lot of fun. What I realise more and more by the day (although it is taking a lot of learning), is that being “lazy” is perfectly fine. If I want to spend my Sunday relaxing rather than worry for 3 hours where we’re going to buy our first home, or whether I should do a masters degree, then I am perfectly entitled to that.
So if you’re reading this, and you also worry about how often you procrastinate on what you need to do, or you worry that you’ve been a bit more laidback than usual, think of the following questions:
- Is what you’re worrying about something you need to do, or want to do?
- If it is something you want to do, why aren’t you doing it right now? Are you currently happier at this time not doing that task? If yes- then that’s perfectly fine. If no, question what is it that is stopping you from doing the task, but also- don’t put pressure on yourself that because there is an obstacle, that this can’t be thought through. Write down what you want to do, and make a plan of when this can be done on a to-do list or set a reminder. For example if you want to rearrange the socks drawer, tell Alexa, or set an alarm on your phone that you’ll do this at 19:00 on Saturday for example. When this is done- reward yourself with a treat of choice.
- If it is something you need to do, why aren’t you doing it right now? If it is something you are putting off- I recommend you get a to-do list, and write down each step in the task you’re doing. When you’ve completed each task, reward yourself with a little break, or a treat of choice. For example if you have a university assignment to do that is 2000 words, for every 500 words completed, give yourself a 30 minute break.
I hope you enjoyed this post. Let me know your thoughts as I’d be interested in your opinion on this too.