I have been asked this question more times than I can count. When people ask me this question, I generally blush and give them the old, “Oh, gosh. I really don’t do much.” I regard their question as more of a little ego boost for me, and I’m pretty certain they consider the rhetorical question their act of kindness for the day. But, after hearing this question more and more often, and thinking about how I used to ask the same question of others, I wonder, “Do people really care what I have to say? Are people actually seeking an answer to this question I assumed was rhetorical? Do people actually believe I’m ALWAYS doing it all?” I never lump myself into the category of the Do It All-ers, but it’s interesting that people see me in that light, even if I don’t believe it myself.
Well, I’m not a Do It All-er. I can’t pretend I do it all. I don’t even want to. Though I’m far from the pillar of productivity, I do get things done. When I work, I work hard. I’m not the person who is making millions of dollars from the comfort of my home, but I am happy; I am productive; I do get things done.
Thinking of my day-to-day life, I feel like I really don’t do much. But, if I total what I’ve done over the span of a week, month, year, I do surprise myself sometimes. I’m a hard worker when I want to be. That’s probably what people see. You might see me on social media starting a new hobby; you might see a post about a children’s book I’m writing; you might see that I wrote a new blog post. That’s what makes people think I’m a Do It All-er. There are days I don’t sit down. There are days when I’m awake for almost a full twenty four hours before my brain finally let’s me relax. There are weeks when I start three new hobbies … just because. There are weeks when I start a new business venture … just because.
But, it’s important that you understand that I’m also someone who understands the true meaning of couch potato. There are days I just Netflix. Yes. Netflix is a verb in my house which means to binge-watch television all day. There are days when I sleep 10 hours and could go back for more. That day you saw I only had 2,000 steps on Fitbit, I wasn’t charging it; that’s literally all I moved that day.
Now, some Do It All-ers might scoff at this and wonder how I could waste an entire day in front of the tv or reading on the couch. But, I don’t think the majority would. I am productive because I am lazy … at times.
I feel like most people can relate to this. Most people take calculated breaks from productivity. People, like me, do this so they don’t burn out. I know when I need to just idle the engine. No forward movement, no backward. I am purposeful in my quest for being still- mentally and physically. There are people, however, who accidentally stumble upon these patterns of fruitlessness, but they don’t understand the beauty of what they are experiencing. These people are generally the ones who begrudge themselves for wasting an entire day. They slander themselves for skipping that workout, even though they had all day. I believe these are the people who ask, “How do you do it all?” They haven’t learned to allow themselves the luxury of guilt-free rest.
I truly believe that the counterpart of productivity is unproductivity; they work in perfect harmony. I believe that idleness is the balance to industriousness. I believe that productivity’s vacation is a little place on the shore of Lazy Island. When I need a vacation from real-life, I can’t afford to jet off to a tropical island. Instead, I hunker down in my jammies for a day and turn off my “to do” list.
What I’m saying is that I can do it all, as you say, because I cut myself some slack. I can’t always be doing a million and one things, and I’m fine with that. When I work, I work hard. When I don’t work, I work hard at not working. Now, take my advice and enjoy some guilt-free laziness.
Now, when people ask me, “What can’t you do?” That’s a whole other animal. I just haven’t written that blog post … yet.
What’s your trick for “doing it all”?