We all know the feeling: a million things to do and not enough time. And still, everything has to get done. The bad feeling, when we don’t manage. The bad feeling, when we allow ourselves a break because society has drilled one thing into our heads: you must function at all times! It’s insane and not ok.
I feel like adulting is this whole competition with just anyone. I look at other people who seem to have their shit together and manage it all and feel bad about myself. In the back of my head, I know it often just seems that way. Everyone has their issues. Still, it doesn’t make me feel great.
Why do we always have to prove that we manage it all? Why is the answer to “How are you doing?” always “Great, everything is good. Just a little stress, but it’s fine.” instead of “I suck at adulting, life is annoying, and right now, I just want to cry all the time cause it’s all too much.” Why do we attend social events, even though we don’t feel like going? Why don’t we just say “no” more often? We hardly do that. We suck it up and write another to-do list. We leave the house. We pretend that everything is great. I do that. All the time.
And it’s the same with work. Just this week, I had two friends send me voicemails, telling me that they are sick but couldn’t just stay home and not work. Why do we do this? Why isn’t our health important enough? I do this as well. I would have to be seriously sick to miss work. And it’s truly ridiculous. Why do we think that without us, the world stops turning? We think we’re irreplaceable. We want to be. Everything is going to break down with us not being there. At work and generally in life.
In his book “The Comfort Book”, Matt Haig writes:
You don’t always have to do stuff. Or achieve stuff. You don’t have to spend your free time productively. You don’t have to be doing Tai Chi and DIY and bread-making. Sometimes you can just be and feel things and get through and eat crisps and survive, and that is more than enough.
And he is absolutely right. But here is the thing. I do know how to relax and do nothing. I really do. I just don’t feel good about it, and that is the problem. I try and write actually achievable lists, which they mostly are not. I add things that more or less have to be done, and things that are fun and I love. Guess what I focus on the most… However, the feeling of ticking something off is good. Too good. Which is also a problem.
What I’m saying is that we should try to enjoy ourselves more. Sure, some things have to get done, but I feel like we overdo it. I’m currently really trying to use my time more wisely, in order to feel better, but also to make proper time for the things I love. So, when I don’t fall out of bed at like 2 pm and instead get up in the morning and do household things or something, I have all afternoon to do whatever I feel like doing. But here it is again. I move my schedule around to try and make it all work because otherwise, I find it hard to feel fulfilled.
You don’t need to be busy. You don’t need to justify your existence in terms of productivity. Rest is an essential part of survival. An essential part of us.
And again, I agree with Matt Haig. Resting is important, and it should be a lot more popular. So I’m going to continue getting lots of sleep, binge-watching TV shows, working on my scrapbooks, or just hanging out, reading, and try not feeling bad about it. Because technically, it’s not doing nothing. It’s simply doing something that makes me happy, and we should do more of that.