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I do a lot, or not enough: a reflection on the use of time

As you know my health has not been at the top recently, and this has compelled me to slow down my rhythm and to change the way I use time.

I practice Linguistic Empathy and I expect you to do the same. Please bear with me if my English is not perfect.

Enough!!! You are doing too much!!!“. I have been hearing this roughly since I was born. I have always wanted to do a lot, since I was a child. A lot of playing, friends, snacks and lots of dreams. I have not changed. I still do, think, eat and love a lot. This is the way I am.

use of timeWhile years go by, though, energies decrease. Moreover, in my case, the damn platelets keep on falling down, and I don’t know whether it is the concern caused by this or the fact that with a limited number of platelets one feels more easily tired, but I have to admit the I recently felt I could not cope with everything and needed to change something in my use of time. The pace of life in Italy, where I have more engagements than in Jakarta, I drive my own car, I take care of my house and 1500 other things, requires much more time and vitality.

There is a but, though: for me slowing down is a little bit like dying 🙂 And it’s not because I can’t  be happy with doing nothing, I am perfectly capable of spending a whole afternoon lying on the sofa reading, sleeping or chatting. It feels a bit like dying because in whatever I do, even in those things that require a lot of engagement, concentration and energy, I find the nourishment that gives me the motivation to keep on, and the meaning of my life.

I know that in my routine there is maybe too much of everything. I say no to nothing because everything seems interesting to me. And what many consider simply as a job, is a pleasure and a nourishment for me.

use of timeI have recently spent three days at the seaside with a dear friend. Three days of total relax: reading, the beach, chatting and restaurants. I enjoyed every single moment, but I missed Expatclic. I deeply miss the regular rhythm of work I had in Jakarta, the continuity in following the community and the constant contact with my team. I miss my blog, my writing, chatting on the social, reading interesting articles.

It has been in listening to this feeling that I understood it is not in this area that I have to slow down. I always encourage my clients to find solutions in their stories, in the feelings they have daily. And this is what I did. I listened to what I miss and to what I feel as a burden. What gives me joy and what makes me tired. And I have understood that if I have to change the use of my time, I don’t have to do that on Expatclic, or the articles I write, the translations, the community, the organization around the website and the small and big tasks I share with my team to keep this wonderful project alive.

use of timeWhat I need is to be less solicited. Being constantly contacted by a high number of people for a really vast variety of issues requires a lot of time. Were I now constantly solicited, I would free a bit of time to devote to those things that I am really passionate about. More calmly, with less stress, and getting less tired.

I am gently trying to change attitude and my use of time. I am obviously happy to receive a thousand messages per day because I feel people think about me, that I am in the lives of many persons in the world. However, answering and following everyone has become impossible. Between Whatsapp, Messenger, e-mails, LinkedIn, Facebook and I am certainly forgetting something, I should spend my days answering, reacting, chatting. Unfortunately I cannot afford this any more.

Once I immediately reacted whenever I felt the sound of notifications on my phone, and I rushed to read, and to answer. I used to live far away from my sons and my family in Italy, and every notification could mean they needed me. Now, living in Italy, this urgency does not exist any more.

I am not asking the people of my network to change. I am the one who is changing. I am looking for my personal and meaningful way to reposition myself within a huge community of people I have met in my life. I am linked to everyone of them in different ways and depth, and I would never give up on them, but I have to treat them in a different way. It is a fun and creative process and it is already showing the first results. This post is one of them.

 

Claudia Landini
Tuscany, July 2018
Photo Credit ©ClaudiaLandini
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