These days I’ve been feeling like I’m in a cycle of perpetual exhaustion. There is not enough time to do all of the things I want to be doing and I’m expanding my days by staying up later, waking up earlier, to do them all. I can’t seem to keep up with my own interests. But what I’m scared to ask myself is this: Can someone get burnt out from doing all of the things they love? IS THAT A THING THAT CAN HAPPEN? Because if it is, I would appear to be the most selfish human in the world for complaining about something that is such a privilege.
I want to continue working 45 hours a week. I want to do my readings and assignments for university. I want to read for fun. I want to blog and write. I want to journal. I want to meditate. I want to learn photography and coding and enhance my graphic design skills. I want to keep learning how to play the guitar. I want to listen to latest episodes of the podcasts I’m following. I want to meal prep for the week and clean and do laundry (but let’s be real, cleaning and laundry end up moving to the bottom of my priorities list). I want to continue writing my book and I want to see that friend who I made plans with 2 months ago and still haven’t gotten around to. I want to wash my hair because it’s been so long that dry shampoo can’t even fix it! I want to spend more time with my cat because he’s so lonely and I’m not home enough.
I get to do a majority of these things, but waking up at 5am every day and going to sleep around midnight is too short of a time period. I need more time. I almost feel like I’ve transitioned from someone who dreaded having to be alive for another day to someone who is addicted to life. A former insomniac who wanted to sleep to just get away from the world to someone who drinks so much coffee to stay awake and continue making things.
The most wonderful and terrifying part about myself is my motivation to keep working, keep learning, and most importantly, keep creating. The scary part is how fleeting all of my interests are. I hop from one thing to the next and the one after that. I have to constantly remind myself that this is what a life of following your curiosity looks like and this is the life where I feel happiest, but it is also not the life suggested by western society.
Sometimes I wonder why I can’t just like doing one thing and stick to it and grow with it. I admire people who have that kind of dedication. Often times, I wonder if I’m even cut out for any long-term commitments in general. Why is it that I don’t only have one passion and why is it that my many interests become a bore after a certain amount of time? Why is it that I move from one thing to the next and then go back to the first one, and then move on to something completely different, over and over again? How am I supposed to make any decisions in my life if I’m not even sure I’ll want to move forward with it a few weeks from now? And lastly, WHY IS EVERYTHING ALWAYS SO MESSY?
So that’s just about what has been racking up in my mind my whole life. It is also the reason I’ve always felt very out of place, even growing up. I’ve always felt like I was born at the wrong time or the wrong place. The basis in which I work, think and behave goes completely against the ways in which we are made to believe we should be. We are supposed to passionate about one thing and we are supposed to follow that, and only that, all throughout our lives and grow it into a career. So basically, I should be the exact opposite of myself to get anywhere in life, which means I just have to change every part of who I am. Just what I needed to hear! I’ll get right on that, thanks.
And then I stumbled on this.
And suddenly, it all made sense. The woman Liz Gilbert was talking about was everything that I was and still am.
She explains the world as being divided into two very different kinds of people: the Jackhammers and the Hummingbirds. You put a passion in a Jackhammer’s hands and they just drill away, never veering. That is what they do and that is who they are. Hummingbirds, however, spend their lives doing it very differently. They move from tree to tree, from flower to flower, from field to field. Trying many things, weaving various aspects of the world together. The service that they do in the world is cross-pollinating. Both kinds of people are essential in this world because that is how we were made to be. But in a world that fetishizes passion, the hummingbirds are made to believe that they are doing it all wrong.
But both kinds of people are essential in this world because that is how we were made to be and I’M A FREAKING HUMMINGBIRD.
So no, that doesn’t mean that life has suddenly become simple and I never beat myself up about the way that I am. It’s not that I don’t fear the constant change I bring about in my own life on a daily basis. But a lot can come from just knowing that you are not alone and that has brought more than just comfort into my life. It has also given me acceptance. It allowed me to give myself the permission slip to continue doing what I’m doing and being who I am, and not feeling guilty about it (most of the time).
No, I don’t have just one passion. I’m passionate about many things – some fade quickly and some last fairly long. Everything is always fleeting and moving and changing. But what does stick is my passion for life and my passion for creating.
No one should ever have to feel guilty about the way they are wired because that is who they must be in this world. That is who we were always made to be. Being exactly who you are in this world is doing a service to humanity as a whole.
On that note, I hope you all have a magical Tuesday and continue to follow your instincts and curiosity.