The structure of the work day delegates writing to a certain time of day; truthfully the lateness of the evening when I should already be in bed. So today while my patient naps I am starting the process of this entry.
The view from the computer today.
It has led to me thinking about the structure of our lives and the busyness. I read an interesting article about this very topic and will attempt to post a link (something I am still trying to master).
As it pertains to structure our human life is quite inflexible. I hesitate to say rigid as there are a few mavericks around that negate the norm but for the most part we all prescribe to certain routines. Nap time twice a day for babies and toddlers but the rest of their time is spent learning and playing. Children have school which leaves them with fragments of the morning, afternoon and evening to play, relax and learn. The high school years follow that same regime except they do more stuff, stay up later and struggle to get out of bed.
Post high school it all changes once again depending on what direction one pursues. University or a tech school gives you a more flexible school schedule but spare time is spent doing papers and working. Once a career path is chosen one then puts in long hours to “get ahead” so that homes, dream trips and items can be purchased. Too often at this stage friends and fitness can get lost in the way side and those are important quantities to keep in balance. If marriage and children are in the works then it really seems like a time machine zapped the hours out of the clock and getting even the laundry done can be a challenge let alone read a book or go for coffee with a friend.
The next stage after all those busy years is an empty nest and if you are lucky this happens while you are still working and have some spare income to use for fun things like travel. With retirement more free time becomes available and working people often wonder how one fills up those hours. I know of several retired people who still have structure in their life as they have regularly scheduled items like my cousin who does calculus once a week because she always wanted to master it!! I am pretty sure I will skip that activity but I will structure my day to include a walk first thing in the morning and some writing time during the sunlight hours. The busyness is still evident in those first years of retirement as travel and volunteers and friends fill up many hours but in the “golden years” time can hang heavy around the neck of a lonely person who has lost some mobility, independence and friends/spouse.
We are empty nesters and I miss our children daily but I know that we are all in the right place for the stages of our lives. This free time has enabled me to pursue several avenues but still I put “too much” into too little time. I am not overly concerned with the quest of “more” and pick pursuits that challenge me mentally or creatively. I am striving for a balance with fitness, food and down time but too often I get sucked into the vortex of “doing it all”. I do practise saying no to requests for volunteer time and I try extremely hard to have one day a weekend where I don’t leave the our little bit of paradise as this revitalizes me immensely. So perhaps on some levels I am trying to achieve becoming more of an Essentialist without even knowing that there was a term for it.
Except for photos where more is better!
So I will close with the challenge to each of my readers to examine their life and pursue those items that make the “grade” and match the values that you hold dear in your heart. Dare to become a maverick and take that trip, pull the kids out of activities or have a nap if you need it.
A wood pecker (?) pursuing it’s life activities.