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September 25, 2012

On Finding Balance

Filed under: Uncategorized — thirdxlucky @ 12:18 am

Here’s what I learned today: It’s important for me to work. However we’re defining “work”, it is, specifically, important for me to work very hard, sometimes to the point of being physically and mentally exhausted, and to feel like I’m making progress toward specific goals.

However, this is not because the work I’m doing is particularly special or important in and of itself. It might be. It might not be. Interpretations of the value of my work will vary — including my own. It’s because the process of creation is a form of self-nourishment.

It’s important for me to work because, for me, work is a kind of self-care. Demonstrably, when I work too little, I slip into existential depression. On the other hand, working too much, to the point where my work interrupts my self-care, defeats the entire purpose of working in the first place.

I started this project to habituate self-care with the idea that doing so would make me stronger, better, faster, clearer and otherwise capable of producing better work. That if only I could stop being steeped in so much psychoemotional chaos and tug-of-war, I could focus on “actualizing my potential” in some meaningful way. I had it backwards. Doing improved work may turn out to be a side-effect of self-love, but it’s not the goal.

I find pleasure, fulfillment, grounding in the act of working and in seeing my results. But whether I’m doing something “special” or making some Important Difference in the world is irrelevant. Even if I am, even if I do, that’s nice but it’s not what matters about my time here. What matters about my time here is my time here. I only get to do this once.

That’s all for right now.


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