Enjoy The Luxury of Time

What I am talking about here, has nothing to do with the types of luxury that we normally think of like a luxurious lifestyle, designer clothing, first-class travel, expensive cars and leisure activities, five-star holiday accommodation and the ability to employ housekeeping. I enjoyed these luxuries of life, but the joy I felt was shallow. After a few years, I got bored. Nothing I did had brought meaningful satisfaction.

The one thing I did not get to enjoy during this time of luxurious living was the luxury of having time to work on my creativity. I was so busy working and networking that I didn’t have the time or energy to do the two things that I most desired to do – write songs/poems and sing. It wasn’t until I went on an extended working holiday, living in a motorhome, that poetry just started flowing out of me. You can read my article A Nomad Poet about this time in my life.

These types of luxuries in life require money and to make money requires time. Time itself is luxurious: to have the time to relax with family and friends. Time to, not just engage in, but to enjoy our hobbies, sport, health and fitness, or our creativity. I say enjoy because our passion for these activities often dwindles to mere interest as we become too busy to enjoy them. We’re physically present but not present in the moment. We’re thinking of work or feeling guilty because we are not working. The clock is ticking as the excuses roll off our tongues “I can’t stay long. I will have to go soon because I need to finish the job I didn’t get done yesterday.” As we move further into adult life, we tend to do less and less of the things we enjoy. Life becomes more about doing what you must do, should do or need to do. We say “One day, I will have the time to do this and that.” “When the kids have left home.” “When my parents have passed away…”

These past few years, I have watched my 92-year-old father let go of all the activities he used to be passionate about – fishing, motorbike riding, driving, walking, going to church, water skiing, camping… and losing his memory of all these activities. Watching him go through this letting go process has made me truly grateful for my own health and ability. I not only feel grateful, I continually remind myself to stay passionate about the activities that I enjoy doing. Every day counts.

What do we need to do to stay passionate about what we do and not drop into the bland mediocre mindset of just being interested? Just watching other people enjoy doing what we used to do, or would love it try. Watching people on TV or from the grandstand. Once our passion dies, we slip into mediocrity. Everyday life unfolds into blandness. Where once we whistled while we worked, whether paid or unpaid, now our whistle is but a sigh.

What can we do to catapult ourselves out of this blandness? Ok, we may not be able to water ski or ride a motorbike because of injuries. Our memory may not be as good as it used to be. But are these valid excuses not to passionately enjoy an activity in life? I recently bought a bicycle because I really missed riding. The last time I owned a bike was in high school. The first time I went for a ride a month ago I felt a rush of excitement and pleasure. Feeling the wind in my hair, feeling young again and it’s quicker than walking! A 15-minute fast ride each afternoon refreshes my soul and gets my heart pumping.

I was in my flow. Riding a bike was a passion that I was drawn back to. It obviously held deep meaning for me. Like my poetry writing. As a young teenager, I wrote songs and played the guitar. Once I left high school and started full-time work, I put the guitar in the cupboard and didn’t play it for over 40 years. Then, a few years ago, I started playing it with passion and enjoyment. You can read the full story about this part of my life in my article Duo Poets.

You could try venturing into a new area of creativity within your genre or outside what is familiar to you. Instead of painting a country scene, paint a seaside scene, instead of scenery paint people. Instead of writing another book from the same genre, write in a different one. Instead of writing, try painting or craftwork. I did this last Christmas. I made all my own Christmas cards from scrapbooking kits. That was the last thing I had time for on Christmas Eve, but it was so creative and enjoyable and the recipients of the cards enjoyed being entertained by the story I told about the creation of the card.

I started doing a jigsaw puzzle last year, but I didn’t enjoy doing it. I found it frustrating. So next I want to try painting. I cannot draw a stick figure, so that will be interesting! The point I am trying to make is to do activities you enjoy doing or activities that you think you would enjoy doing. If you try something and you don’t connect with it. Stop doing it. Stick with what you love doing or try something different.

I don’t believe passion is something that you can force. I believe it is something that knocks on the door of our hearts wanting to be a part of our lives or wanting to be allowed back into our lives. Creative passion is not the same as sexual or angry passion, which Hollywood portrays as an emotion that is barely controllable. Passion in a creative mindset is very much controllable. It is enthusiasm and eagerness to create or accomplish something. It energizes, it’s working in an enjoyable state of flow. Whether your passion is fishing, motorbike riding, driving, walking, going to church, water skiing, camping, painting, writing, singing, photography…

Julia Cameron, the author of The Artist’s Way says that many people who are blocked creatively suffer from a deadly duo: artistic anorexia and prideful perfectionism. They don’t enjoy the process of learning and practising new creative activities. They push hard and fast for perfection. They want to be the best. If they don’t achieve that, they don’t want to do it at all. She tells the story of an accomplished musician who suffered this creative blockage “I try to play an instrument and then I hear myself, and what I can do is so far away from what I want to do that I cringe and then I quit.” In time, He began exploring.

He bought gospel, country and western and Indian drum music. A month late, he impulsively bought a set of practice sticks at the music store. It wasn’t until three months later, he picked them up and started drumming on the handlebars of his exercise bike while rock and roll blasted through his headphones. Another two months later, he cleared a space in the attic and bought a second-hand drum kit. At first, he was embarrassed at how bad he played, but then he just relaxed and had fun with it and in time it sounded good. Julia says “Serious art is born from serious play.”

Doing the activities that we feel passionate about and enjoy doing, whether they are expensive or inexpensive, is enjoying the luxury of time. Which makes those activities luxuries in our lives. As we acknowledge and invite these luxuries into our lives, we may indeed trigger an increased creative flow. Many things we do may seem silly. “Don’t be silly” is what our Wet Blanket adult who resides within our mind tells us. Who cares if Wet Blanket Adults think ‘your silly,’ wasting your time. Be creative. Be passionate about as many activities in your life as possible.

Beverley Joy © 2022 of Simply Create 2 Share

You may also enjoy my amusing poem The Tussle Between My Brain Muscles at Simply Story Poetry and my article Living in the shadow of your creativity.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑

%d bloggers like this: