So I have been in the work force for nearly three years now. It does not seem like a lot to most people, but for me it’s enough to know that I want to be there for as little as possible for the rest of my life. Growing up with a father who, ever since I can remember, spoke of not wanting to work and certainly not for someone, I always kind of knew that there are people with the same view on life. It’s not just the view, it’s possible, he retired at the age of 43. After reading The Idle Parent from Tom Hodgkinson, I also found out that there are people who can put this view very eloquently on paper. I have subscribed to his email updates and, needless to say, his view on life. He recently quoted Cormac McCarthy in one of his emails: “I always knew that I didn’t want to work. You’re just here once, life is brief and to have to spend every day of it doing what somebody else wants you to do is not the way to live it.” Well I have never read anything from Mr. McCarthy, but this makes me want to.
I, for one, value my time obsessively. When I got my job on the Gold Coast, I spent the whole first two weeks looking for the best possible route to work. One with the least amount of lights, roundabouts and slowest speed limits. I have the best route now. If I were to add the amount of time I spent looking at google maps, I think it would add at least five minutes to all of my drives to work for the last month and a half respectively. However the time I used for this research were my work hours so it was in fact my employer’s time. When I realized it takes me forty minutes from home to work, I quickly figured that it’s about eleven days a year taking holidays and bank holidays into account. Well shit! Eleven days, in the course of one year, is a lot of time. I just don’t let it go, I dwell on this “lost time”, I talk about it and I obsess. It’s not that my time is more important than everyone else’s, it’s just because it’s mine. I wouldn’t say I am obsessed with efficiency, but I definitely spend more time thinking of the most efficient option than other people would. What I definitely do differently than most people is grieving that lost time. Every time I go to a shop that’s closed or do not manage to sort the needful at any given office, I have regrets. I keep thinking how could I have done it differently and it can easily ruin my day.
Already after three years in the work force, I can’t stoop to the level of staying at work for the paid for eight hours when my work is done. I just can’t force myself to do so. It’s not the worst thing in the world to manage my eight hour work days duties in four hours, but it’s not great when I fail to enjoy the moment because at this point and at this minute I should already be drinking the second cup of coffee, to be able to put my shoes on at exactly eight hundred hours and be in a car and out of the garage and eight hundred and five. Yes this was an intentionally long sentence because that’s how my brain works sometimes.
I am at the end of savasana during my yoga practice and I really do want to focus on my breath, but I start to think that I have to wash my hair and that today’s lesson has gone way over an hour.
So to sum up, efficiency – yes, trying to come up with ideas how to liberate myself from the work force – yes.
Failing to enjoy the moment, questioning work life every single day and dwelling on moments that didn’t go exactly as planned and telling my friends off for coming late – no.