September 3rd, 2020
Brainstorming topics for an article today, I kinda lost track of the purpose of writing to me, which is mostly to convert abstract thought into words. I started to judge myself thinking no one wants to hear me tell them, "to do this because I do it." And, again, that's not why I started doing this. Regardless of how unfair the observation is. Most importantly, no one will pay attention to this if they don't want to, and that thought is quite freeing. I write to be creative. I publish it online in case anyone can derive something from them. So enjoy.
"It is good to rub, and polish our brain against that of others." — Michel Eyquem de Montaigne
All that being said, I've had a few conversations with a friend and my wife about the anxiety we sometimes face around judging our extra-occupational activities. We resonated the feeling of judging our activities in any given moment simply based on how we might feel in the future, as though not deriving maximum amount of pleasure in future from reflecting on past activities is the ultimate goal. It's not.
We do what we do in any given moment to satisfy an obligation, curiosity, interest, etc. There's a lot of reasons you might be reading this right now. I have my own aspirations, interests and hobbies. I do the things I do based on that list plus more, as does everyone. Sitting around and considering how I feel about activities I've done in the past has never been a hobby or an interest. I don't think this particular practice is productive, thus it's definitely not an aspiration of mine. Of course I judge things I've done in the past when it comes to making goals and thinking about my identity, but practicing this too persistently and vainly makes everything seem lesser.
I plan. I set goals. I am productive. Good is better than perfect, because perfect is a moving target. I acknowledge I need to give myself a break when I want to indulge myself in a book or game. Conversely, this might make me sound crazy, but I tend to judge myself even when I want to work on a project, thinking I might regret giving up time to 'relax'.
The following is a message to myself, as well as anyone who feels the same. Indulge yourself. Just do something. Stop judging everything you do, and get to it. At the end of the day, having done something is better than boredom.
“Is life not a thousand times too short for us to bore ourselves?” ― Friedrich Nietzsche