New Years has always been so inspiring to me. It’s a time to romanticize ourselves being anyone or doing anything. A new beginning.
But recently, I came across a quote that struck me. It says:
“Waste time this year. Go for long, rambling walks. Write poems. Try a new recipe just because. Pray. Paint. Knit something. Read that big old book. Work on your novel. Our world is obsessed with productivity, but ‘unproductive’ hours are the most soul-shaping parts of our lives.” -Joy Clarkson
As I read this, I began wondering why New Year’s resolutions are often meant to restrict us, rather than fulfill us. We waste so much energy creating goals that are centered around things like losing weight, saving money, and working more that we neglect to think about how we spend our free time.
When was the last time someone asked you what you loved doing? I’m asking you right now. If you can’t immediately think of 5 things, I am challenging you, (myself included), to make 2019 more about spontaneous discovery, creation, and love- and less about work.
There has to be more to our lives than how we choose to spend our 9-5. Even if your work makes you happy and you genuinely enjoy going, if we don’t spend time pursuing passions and hobbies and spending time with the people we love, we are bound to get stuck in a routine that restricts us.
The capitalistic world we live in demands that work rules our lives, but our soul demands the opposite. We rarely remember the habitual parts of our work day; yet we can recite quotes from our favorite movies and films years after watching them.
In 2019, I have the goal that for each productive hour I spend working, I spend another hour being unproductive- doing something I love. I want to stop wasting time scrolling through my feeds on social media or binging Netflix and encourage myself to actually do things I love.
While I love social media as much as the next basic, twenty year old girl in Delta Gamma, I feel like it has taken over our lives almost as much as work has. (Like why am I scrolling through Venmo as a source of entertainment)???
Our free time is valuable. So valuable that it should only be spent doing things that bring us joy. Specifically, I have three goals about how I want to be more unproductive individual.
- I want to read 52 books this year. (1 book a week for a year)! I’m only a couple weeks in, but I’ve already noticed so many positive benefits from doing this. When I read, I feel inspired and creative. And strangely enough, even though reading for fun is “unproductive,” I feel extremely accomplished and proud each time I finish a book.
- I want to spend more time outside of my room and with my roommates/family. Sure we all need alone time sometimes, but hanging out with friends and family can turn an extremely ordinary day into something extraordinary. Even though I am extremely introverted, I have noticed that having a simple conversation with someone instead of hanging in my room alone energizes me and makes me feel more…alive? human? (is that too dramatic?)
- Explore more. Even though the winters make all of us want to crawl in our beds and never leave our apartments, it is important to have a change of scenery every once in a while. Plus, you never know what you will find…
So, I can’t believe I am saying this but: here’s to being ~unproductive~!
Until next time.