Existential Friday Newsletter

v39: Getting sick is really about revaluing your time

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Last weekend I ended up getting sick. We all get sick and usually the experience isn’t very eventful. For some reason, this time felt different.

I was still mostly able to function, but my pace was a lot slower. More notably, I felt frustrated because it was harder to complete everything I wanted. That frustration led to reflection. Come on, did you think this was going somewhere else?

Because I felt like I couldn’t get as much done, I started to question my priorities. How had so many things piled up that I was running out of time to do them? Was everything that I was doing really necessary? Of course you always have those fatalistic questions like, if I don’t get better is this really the last thing I want to do?

When you think about it, getting sick alters time. Your actions become less effective given the same amount of time and that makes your time scarce. Scarcity can cause you to assign a higher value to your time. When you assign more value, you begin to question and reprioritize.

Unfortunately, it’s easy to fall back into old routines as soon as we get better. For most people that’s “being busy.” We run around doing so many different things that we shortchange meaningful activities and big projects. For that matter, where is your energy best spent? Do your actions in this exact moment lead you closer to where you want to go?

As Steve Jobs said, “I have looked in the mirror every morning and asked myself: “If today were the last day of my life, would I want to do what I am about to do today?” And whenever the answer has been “No” for too many days in a row, I know I need to change something.”

Now, I’m not advocating that we all run out and get sick to try to find perspective. Instead, we can take some time to think about how we’re spending our moments because those moments make up the days. It’s easy to get addicted to busyness because it feels productive. Is it though?

Here’s a video from Bill Gates and Warren Buffet on valuing time:

Miscellany:

Banana art anyone?

 

Who knew animals could be so punny . . .

 

This Lil Dicky video is amazing on so many levels.  Just watch it.

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