I’ve been obsessed lately with the power of time. How do we choose to spend it? What do we do because of need and what do we do with our free time? What if the lines between needing and wanting were blurred and we could actually enjoy ourselves while we do the things required of us?

It is so heartbreaking and scary to me to see all the thousands of people, brain-dead at work, minds numbed to the rest of their days. It’s a complete waste of life. Life is happy and active and ever-changing, and remaining stagnantly in place, year after year, is the most wretched way to live. Things will not always go as planned, but that’s ok. We get new ideas out of nowhere, and we change our minds all the time. It’s ok! Change is natural and good for us.

I am about to move 1500 miles to go to a college where I know one person. I have never switched schools before in my life. I have never moved or lived without my parents. I have no experience with this kind of thing. And every day, as the moving date marches closer and closer, I get a little more scared. But I know that fear is the reason I have to stride confidently towards the dread and never back down. Everyone has to leave home. Everyone has to grow up, move on, leave behind the things they loved. But what makes it worth it is what’s on the other side of the door. What’s the future? Better question: what will I make of it?

I am blessed in that my greatest talent is learning, so I’m good at a lot of different things. But what will capture my mind and my focus? What will occupy the rest of my days? What will I choose to do?

I have no idea.

But it’s ok, because I have a few ideas. I know it has to constantly intrigue me, all the time. Hunger for knowledge and mastery must consume me. I shouldn’t be able to stop thinking about it. Obsession. It doesn’t matter if I’m no good, it should be that entertaining. Mastery comes later. I’m great at acquiring new skills, but it’s hard for me to master one thing. So what will I choose to see through?

It all comes down to choices. After a long day, will I sit for hours on the couch, Netflixing? Or will I write the last verse of my unfinished song? Will I let my eyes glaze over with Twitter updates, or will I try out a new knitting stitch? We have all the time we need to accomplish anything we could dream of, but we rarely realize it. What is important to us? What pulls at our hearts and never ceases? What would we rather be doing right now? These are our passions and we should never ignore them. Stop drowning them in a sea of “buts”, “ifs”, and “tomorrows”. Today is the day. Now. Pick up that old baseball bat and take a swing.

What will be your legacy? How will you be remembered? The man who worked away his life, or the man whose life worked for him? It can be alluring to spend every waking hour grinding away, making money, but is it enjoyable? What’s right for you is the thing you’d never want to retire from. The thing you’d do even if they weren’t paying you. The thing that pushes you to check out books from the library because you’re so curious. These are the things that matter, that make us human, that make you you. These are the things we need to devote our time to.

We need to engage our passions, actively doing things every day to improve ourselves and beautify our lives. Even just 20 minutes a day, doing something you love, can be extremely soothing to the soul. I recently started playing guitar and writing my own songs. I’m horrible, but it’s so satisfying to strum along and make noise. Yesterday was the first day in a while that I didn’t get a chance to practice the guitar because I was babysitting all day. While I was watching the kids play tag, one of my songs got stuck in my head. First I started absentmindedly humming it, but then I started singing (softly) and actually fixed a verse I had been stuck on.

My point is, I could have passively sat there and moped about how I had no time to do what I want. But instead, I actively took control of the situation and made the best of what I had.

There are so many different things I am interested in right now; it’s sometimes hard to decide what to do when I have free time. But it doesn’t actually matter. As long as I am enjoying myself and engaging in something that will enhance my skills or knowledge or interests, it’s good enough.

And there’s no way I can predict what I’ll end up doing with my life. All I can do now is what I love. I’ll figure it out along the way. After all, who wants to know the end of the story before they’re done reading?

Note to self: “Wasted Time” by the Eagles just came on my shuffle. Coincidence…?

This comic inspired many of these thoughts. It’s long, but it’s worth the read. It’s about living life the way you want to and pursuing things you love so that you can live with no regrets. Otherwise, you may look back someday with sadness and wish you had done something differently or taken more chances. Better to exhaust all options now and do as much as you possibly can. It’s a great website for inspiration and positive thoughts, check it out!

Thank you to some thought-provoking posts by The Uhm and The Book I Will Never Write that got me thinking. It’s wonderful to find others whose minds work like mine do.

What are your passions? How do you push yourself to lead an inspired and meaningful life? What will your legacy be? Share 🙂