Well sometimes. I like to spend time relaxing, watching a tv show or playing a video game, or even playing guitar, which I guess seems like a productive thing to do. Generally, I procrastinate like a hero, achieving absolutely nothing. With my recent lack of work due to the entrepreneurial lifestyle, I found myself with a lot of free time.
i spent the last three months having fun, catching up on tv and video games, improving my guitar playing, and spending time with good friends. This is all fine and good, but while my friends were working on their careers and moving toward personal achievements, I was moving sideways, and felt as if I was in limbo.
Even though I wasn’t doing much, I felt tired, yet unable to get a good nights sleep. It seemed hard to get to do anything. Worst of all I had no idea what I could do to escape it, and felt like I was falling behind on achieving my dreams, with no way to shake myself into action without falling back into laziness.
Until, one day, some small work came my way. It had me spend a few days being really busy, and I noticed something strange. Even though it was hard work, involved little down time, and had me on the go from early in the morning until late at night, I felt unbelievably happy. I slept like a rock and felt refreshed the next day. I found myself wanting to do more and be productive, and I’ve built on this burst of productivity every day.
Since then I’ve been back up to snuff, and I feel good again. I’m doing things like cleaning the apartment, blogging, and being more active with my business marketing; I feel more energized than when I was ‘relaxing.’ It taught me some very important lessons that I think I always knew but had forgotten:
1. Action is always better than inaction
To go out and do something, anything, always leads to good things and even the smallest bit of progress gives a big payoff in productivity. If you are in a rut, do something small and simple, and build on that accomplishment. It also helps to get out of the house, fresh air is grossly underrated.
2. Learn to enjoy the process in every day tasks
Whether its cleaning, working, or doing something you dread; If you can find enjoyment in completing goals and tasks, your fun begins to derive from overcoming challenges, and you don’t worry so much about relaxing or downtime. The uptime gives the payoff, the accomplishment gives the satisfaction, and the achievement of goals gives the break, which brings us to:
3. The only good break comes right after a major accomplishment
The times in my life when I have felt absolutely on top of the world have been when I have just overcome a huge challenge. Like finishing a week long project or a big presentation. I feel exhausted, but so content with my life. I have earned my rest, and I am content to relax because I don’t have the lingering feelings of lacking accomplishment. This is now my motto:
“Every Day I will Earn my Sleep”
I want to earn my 8 hours of sleep each night, and feel like the day’s accomplishments have taken me closer to achieving my dreams. so I continue on this upswing.
Don’t get me wrong though, we all have those times in our life where we just want to hide, to run away from the world and disappear for a bit. Its in those dark times that if we look within, we can learn the most about our behaviours, and what we actually need to be happy. But even though we run and hide, the world keeps turning with or without us. Given the opportunity I’ll always choose to be creating the future instead of standing on the sidelines.
I hope you will too.