Slowing down? Taking it easy? Relaxing? Yeah, these aren’t things Abi Humber usually chooses to do. Ever since she was a wee child, she’s wanted to be out and about, observing the world and everything in it.
I’m going to stop writing in third person because it’s a lot more than my exhausted, sleep-deprived brain wants to handle right now. Why am I so tired and sleep-deprived? I’m so glad you asked. That’s just what this column is going to address! Well, sort of.
The recent time I have spent doing almost nothing because of my knee recovery has opened my eyes to the huge difference between my pace of life at school and my new, slower pace at home. I’ve seen that I just…don’t stop. It’s not necessarily a bad thing in and of itself, but, like always, a strength can go too far and become a weakness.
Even when I was a baby, I didn’t want to be cradled, facing the person holding me. My dad told me I wanted to be held facing outward, so I could watch what was going on all around me. He said that if someone tried to hold me the “wrong way,” I’d twist and squirm around until the person let me face out.
As Dad and I were talking, I started to realize I’m still quite a bit that way. I don’t take time to relax, because I don’t want to miss out on anything. I tend to fill up my entire day, scheduling coffee and lunch and this activity and that activity back-to-back-to-back until there is almost no room to breathe.
It doesn’t seem that busy to me, but now that I’m doing so much self-reflection, I’m seeing it all unfolding much differently.
In an effort to take action and start to work on this, I’ve been making lists of the things I want to do with my life. Basically, I’m prioritizing. I do things like this all the time—I adore making lists.
I haven’t gotten too far on my list of things I want to accomplish in the fall, though…at the top of my list is “master the Jersey accent.” Right below that is “master the Mexican accent.” I’m a real go-getter, huh?
No, but really, I think I do need to make my final list, or else I just will be bouncing around, doing whatever the moment calls for, and therefore doing way too many things. That’s the cycle I get sucked into. When I don’t know what things are especially important to me, I don’t organize my time well.
There’s nothing wrong with having a busy schedule, but once I can prioritize and realize what I most want to spend my time doing, I think I will find myself feeling much more purposeful and more free to relax and spend some time doing nothing at all.
This is easy to talk about, but hard to even imagine truly doing. Right now, I’m typing but my mind is somewhere else entirely. I’m already thinking through the 45,338 other things I’m going to do today: the ol’ Rev J (Reverend John, aka John Regier) is in town; I’m hopefully going to eat at Chipotle later; I really want to sit and play some guitar; I want to watch Alex Wong and Twitch’s “So You Think You Can Dance” hip-hop routine again (YouTube it! Really!)….
The list doesn’t really end.
As I’m writing, my friend Sara is sitting next to me and commenting on what I type. She just said, “It’s funny that you’re writing about this right now…. How many different things have you suggested that we do even as you try to write this?!”
Ah, man. I guess I’ve still got a ways to go.