Freedom's Where You Find It: The Hidden Motivation of Responsibility
Updated: Aug 16, 2021
Happy Saturday readers! It is so wild to think that I've only been home from school less than two weeks! It feels as though I've already done so much. We are definitely getting closer to that point of the Summer where each day seems to blend as one. And though Spring is technically still in season, the recent warming weather definitely has been deceiving, almost feeling as if Summer is in full swing. Another possible reason for that slight misinterpretation might be from this weeks start at my new Summer job. A fresh replacement for my recently defunct previous employer, I was excited (and slightly tardy) for my first days this week, and I can already tell it is a perfect fit. The shop, the atmosphere, and the people are already proving themselves to be perfectly aligned with what I was looking for in my part-time gig. Working 4 days a week I am very content with the "work-life balance" encouraged for my schedule this summer. Plus, as a self-proclaimed shopaholic, it should come as no surprise that I am working at a string of beautiful boutiques a mere dog-walks distance from my house.
<< Now, it may be shocking for some to read that a teenage girl is roaring to start work life >>
But, disregarding my own current financial necessity (3 months of school spending really adds up) I genuinely was looking forward to getting 'back in the saddle' of retail. The customer interaction, brazen shoplifters, and interesting conversation ascribed to the retail, really is –in my eyes– unmatched to any other profession. In high school, I had worked 2 years at a dwindaling outdoor outlet mall selling under-priced dress shirts to over-worked locals. Eventually, I even worked myself up the leadership ladder from part-time help to part-time manager by the time of close. And though I was admittedly sad to say goodbye to the store that had cradled my confidence and inter-personal connections, I was definately ready to move on and find a more fitting place of work for my new life here in PA.
You may have noticed that there was a mild delay from the time I got home to the time I started work. Truthfully, I did give myself a little extra free time before I started at work, mainly because I knew that after the hard fought semester I would need a break. Boy was that needed. Eight days of unrelented autonomy over my schedule was like a breath of fresh air coming off of my Google Calendar ruled routine at school. And though each day was definitely savored (filled largely with socialization and sleep) come the end of my free days I was eager to introduce a regular responsibly into my life.
" See as I get older, I've started to recognize how, for me, sometimes the joys and flaws of excessive free time can actually turn out to be one and the same."
I continuously see during my times of R & R how easy it can be on break to be completely lost in the present, focused more so on the spontaneous desires of the moment over any intentional commitment for the future. I've seen how without any given structure to my days I find it far too easy to waste hours away on my phone or TV simply because I have the time to "do _____ tomorrow." Even though this heightened presence does offer me a bubble of stress-free mental decompression, it also fails to motivate or inspire my self-responsibility. In truth my psyche becomes almost effort-adverse as I try to chase pleasure in each moment– which, to be fair, in itself isn't entirely harmful. Yet, for my mindset it seems to encourage an undeniable indifference for my ambitions. Catapulting me sooner or later into a paralyzing state of over-procrastination proceeding overwhelm, repeat. This circular cycle can be destabilizing to say the least for someone who already struggles with anxiety and accountability.
So why is selling kitchen signs the quick fix to my motivational woes? Well to put it quite simply, having less time for anything makes me more mindful to prioritize the important things. Because I no longer have unlimited time to procrastinate my responsibilities I have to be specific and intentional with how I spend my limited time. I no longer have the "do x tomorrow" excuse because I simply can't do it tomorrow. Instead of being listlessly lost in every moment, I must be habitually strategic with what and how I exert my energy. Last summer I did neither, and generally it was a blur of heedless impulsivity, often being everywhere, yet no where at all. And after a summer consummated by unfulfilled projects I am determined that when stepping into this new season I will ask more from myself and my time.
There truly is no time to waste when chasing your dreams.
Anything that you want to be done must at some point be done. Not tomorrow. Today. Procrastination only puts off the inevitable. The effort that must be put in is unfortunately unavoidable, no matter how hard we might try. Some people work best with unlimited time to let their mind wander. And though that might work for some, it appears that at times 'their way' is not aligned with the way that works for me. And that's the tricky thing about life really. It's a jumbled mess of trial and error, success and failure, all to arrive us at our heaven's gate of personal fulfillment. Obviously, even though I am underscoring the joys of work a lot in today's post do realize that I won't wake up every morning ecstatically running to the register.
tEven so, appreciating the benefits of responsibility when I do feel them, twill give me points to be grateful for on the days that I would rather hit t the snooze.
Summer is around the corner and I am completely ready to welcome it with open arms and clear intentions motivated by my responsibilities. So next time you begrudingly slump out of bed for your own summer gig, remind yourself of your own reasons for gratitude. Sometimes our mindset just needs a little perspective.
See You Next Week :)