Okay so this month has been really unproductive.
And when I say really unproductive, I mean that it’s a Tuesday and I have only done 3 hours of work out of the 8 hours I’m probably supposed to do. Who even decided on that - the whole 8 hours a work day thing?
I’ve been procrastinating on all of the major important things, like sorting out my budget, finishing my proposal, buying new furniture etc. Basically adulting. Not my fault, blame the monkey!
This is quite ironic because I was the one who suggested to the others that this month we should aim to write about productivity and making the most of lockdown so that we can still continue with life. I’ve been in a slump, and that’s okay. Correction, I’ve been in a slump when it comes to my MSc project. I just haven’t found it in me to do anything about it since I received feedback on the first draft of my proposal almost 2 months ago. Yes, procrastination at its finest. (sigh) It’s not bad I just haven’t had the energy for it.
I’ve been sort of split between trying to finish the layout of this blog and making it look really pretty whilst optimising it so that we actually get views and interactions from those who read it. I don’t know man. Do you guys ever feel like your life is in limbo and you don’t quite know how to get out of it and continue with the rest of your life? I don’t want to end this blog here. So I’m going to come back to this and update it later. Hopefully by then I can have better feedback and give you something that’s actually useful to you. I don’t know. We’ll see...
( a week or so later...)
Okay so here’s the thing. I’ll admit that I often watch way too many productivity/hustle/ get sh*t done YouTube videos and for me that usually gets me in the mood to actually make something of myself. I don’t know what it is about me that’s so scared to just chill and breathe. It’s like every waking moment of my life I have to be thinking about the next big thing, the next amazing thing that I’m going to try to achieve. The next small win.
But the reality of it is that it’s just so exhausting sometimes. I’m so tired and I constantly feel like I’m burning out and yet I can’t help but try to be productive. What it really breaks down to is the fact that I’m so scared to settle for a lifestyle that isn’t part of my life goals/plan.
Granted my life plan isn’t in the least bit concrete. But honestly, I just want it to move in a trajectory that I can be proud of. Sh*t, I just want to be happy and make enough to never have to struggle in life.
I just want to be “successful”. God, I hate that word. What does it even mean?
No really, what does it actually mean to me? To try and figure this out I did a little bit of introspection and spent some time sort of journaling. I found this complementary workbook on Lavendaire’s website (She creates a lot of content online that’s targeted at helping you “create your best life” and leading a fulfilling lifestyle).
So in the workbook you basically have to fill out these four quadrants which are sort of aimed at finding your sweet spot. Basically the intersection between what you’re good at, what you love doing, what you can actually be paid for and what the world needs. Then you spend time exploring which of these options are actually feasible, how you could possibly translate them into something real and you could possible execute those ideas.
Now I really liked doing this activity because in a way, it was sort of helping me work towards finding my Ikigai- which I’ve been actively searching for ever since I found out about the word last year. For those of you who are unfamiliar, your Ikigai is basically your purpose in life. Your reason for being, the thing that makes you excited to wake up every morning and live a fulfilling life.
Anyway, what I realised from the activity was that as important as is for me to be constantly working towards improving myself, I actually need to constantly take time out to figure out what excites and interests me because overtime those things are bound to change. And even though that’s okay, I need to figure out what motivates current me, what makes current me happy, and what current me would be happy to wake up early for (okay that last one is a bit of a lie. Past, present and probably future me hates waking up early but I think you get what I mean😬).
The moment you find your Ikigai, or at least work towards it, it just becomes a whole lot easier to make something of yourself, to do that thing you’ve always wanted to do. To plan things and actually take action on it. And I won’t lie. It can be scary especially because things are so uncertain what with so many months of lockdown, nothing seems certain anymore. I’m not saying it will be easy, just easier.
At the time of writing this, it’s August and we’ve just launched the website. The first blog is scheduled to publish tomorrow and I have no idea whether or not this project will be successful. Some of the ideas I had for this site were aimed at students who were on campus and yet the majority of people can’t make it onto campus for reasons beyond our control. This has prompted us, just like so many others out there, to re-think the manner in which we want to achieve the goals we have planned out.
I think what I’m saying is that even in a Pandemic, we can still find a way to figure out what it is that we currently want out of life and find smalls actionable steps that we can take to make it all possible. In addition, we can also carve out time to make sure that emotionally we’re okay and not getting burnt out.
I think it’s also okay not to be productive every breathing second of your life. We’re not in a rat race, we can enjoy just being. It’s more than enough. I personally just need to figure out how to actually accept this and incorporate it into my lifestyle.
I think it therefore I believe it therefore I can actually do it.