doing or done?
our whole lives as adults revolve around accomplishments. in fact that’s the first step to becoming one. as a child, we’re in it for the fun of doing. as an adult, we’re in it for the value of achieving.
we learn to associate happiness with achievements and accomplishments than experiencing the joy in doing, acting, creating, in the moment.
college is about getting a degree. jobs are about making money. even relationships. the phrasing says it all. it’s a relationship. why don’t we use the word ‘relating’, which makes it present continuous rather than something that feels like level unlocked.
when you start a new venture; professional or personal, how fixated are you on the desired outcomes than on the path there? i’m sure you’ve all heard the maxim ‘journey not destination’ but is that really how you’re living your life?
think about anything you’re interested in currently. let’s take exercising. i’ll bet you’re obsessing about that beach bod you gotta get before it’s summer. the inches and kilos you gotta lose. the admiring glances you’re gonna get.
on a first date? you’re probably thinking of whose place you’re gonna land up in. or picking out names of the kids you’re gonna have. like i said, relaying is real-time constant action, while relationship is like a ship, you embarked and you’re just waiting to get to your destination.
more like done for. dead. accomplishments are actually termination of one’s pursuits. a cessation of activity. sometimes they may be the beginning of another journey to a higher level. but if you’re only obsessed with climbing levels, are you really having fun?
that’s an interesting metric to play with.
am i having fun, right here, right now?
when you ask yourself everyday, in every task you’re engaged in, what’s the answer that echoes in your head? fun is fundamental to being in the moment. every cell in our body wants to light up and dance with the potential of the present.
but instead, we’re visualising a future where we’re accomplished and no longer need to engage in the activity in question. i want to know how you plan to stay in the moment and milk the experience for what it’s worth.
accomplishments and achievements may serve as motivation to begin with, but they can quickly serve as death sentences for delight and enthusiasm. when i meet you, i don’t want to know what you’ve done with your life. i want to know what you’re doing with your day. time is the unit of life. we act today so we achieve tomorrow. i don’t like this equation. i’d rather act today so i can enjoy today. sure, the planned outcomes of our actions today might benefit tomorrow. but how much bandwidth do you want to waste on the future and how much do you reserve to celebrate the present.
let’s play it like this. when you’re meeting someone for the first time, ask them what they’re doing today, working on or playing with. stay within the timeline of a day to shift that perspective from done to doing. let’s play with the present that is this moment of reality.