Creative Development for Artists, Writers and all Artistic Creativity

Oh… I have a strange relationship with this one. I don’t believe it and I do believe it. Potentially I have way too many things to do in each twenty four hours but these days I’m much, much better at being satisfied with what I have done. So instead of stressing about what I haven’t managed to do with my day, now I congratulate myself on what I have done and sleep easy. Mostly.

14 hour clock

And Now the Rant

But hell, the pressure is always there in today’s way of living. It’s so easy to get sucked into that whirlpool of mad activity and goals and things to do and things to have that we really can believe with all our hearts that we need more time!

Western culture, or maybe capitalist culture, I’m not sure which, has us acting like crazy people. We’re time sensitive, time conscious, cash rich/time poor (not everyone, I know), we’re supermums and dads rushing round being all things to everyone. We get to work early and stay late and we organize so many activities for our kids that neither they nor we have a minute of rest.

And having crammed so much in we still find to our everyday horror that there’s stuff we left out. No wonder we go to bed frazzled and dissatisfied.

But how many hours do we want exactly? And what are we going to do with it when we’ve got it?

Well, this is a blog about our creative instincts, so I’m guessing for many the answer would be to use the extra time being more creative. But how is it that an easy way to find out what we really, really want to do with our time is to ask ourselves what we are not doing with it now?

And how is it, exactly, that we can spend whole days or even weeks whizzing around like the proverbial blue-arse fly without getting close to the things we really want to do, or the people we really like to be with?

Did I say days and weeks just now? It can be years. Years of insane rushing and ‘achieving’ and promising ourselves that one day – one day soon – we’re going to slow down enough to smell the roses – maybe even plant some roses.

This is not something we should be saving for retirement.

We Are Greedy

When it comes down to it we’re greedy about the things we want to do with our days and the things we want to have in our lives. We’re like kids in a sweet shop/candy store – I want that – and I want this, and this and yes, lots of that and…

I guess our whole modern society is a bit like that. We are surround by so much stuff and so many tempting options. We have so much to choose from we end up not being able to.

But we have to choose. We have to choose not to have some stuff and not to do some things. Then we can finally find the time to do what’s really important better. So make some choices.

  • Choose how to spend your time
  • Choose how to relax without guilt
  • Choose to reject other people’s definitions of success
  • Choose to do less

And you know what? It’s the people who choose to do less who often end up getting a lot more out of life (yet another paradox – I love ‘em).

  • More enjoyment of what they do choose to do
  • More achievement in the areas they care about
  • Morelong term fulfilment

All this is providing you choose with care. Because if you choose only to please other people – to conform to their view of how your world should be and how you should be using your time, then all the time in the world won’t be enough.

Right… must dash!

2 Responses to “Sideways Saying # 4 – There Aren’t Enough Hours in the Day”

  1. 1 Jerry Smith

    This is interesting and I share some of dichotomy of thinking on this one, Andy. It is certainly true that we all live busy lives but the answer “I’m really busy” seems to have become equally as common a response to “how are you?” as “Fine, thanks”.

    It seems to me that there are a lot of little things that can be done to mitigate the feeling of constricted hours. A lot is related to defining which things are the most important, mean the most to you. finding some time to explore activities in this area can be very rewarding.

    Hint: It probably means less time watching TV……

  2. 2 Andrew Leigh

    Jerry – yes, definitely – defining the important things makes a big difference – if you have the time to do it!

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