I’ve never been accused of being a workaholic. As an adult, I’ve developed an acceptable work ethic, but mostly out of necessity. I go to work, clock in, do my job, clock out. As a writer, “working too hard” isn’t anything I ever have to worry about… Mostly because the world has countless distractions and I’m usually more than happy to divert myself with them. For these reasons, when Leah and I first started talking about going on a vacation this year, there was a voice in my brain that said, “Meh. Vacations are for successful people that have so much going on, they need to escape.” As I sit here, the morning before we flee our lives and go hide out on a boat for the next week, I believe my perspective has changed.
Even without having a consuming job, or filling my life with social obligations, I’ve come to realize that my headspace may be no less cluttered than anyone else’s. As it turns out, I care about this blog, you know… a lot. As such, I carry it with me. When I’m at work, I’m thinking about problems with the layout. When I’m running errands, I’m pondering the next post. When I’m cleaning the house, I’m wondering what I have to do to become one of those bloggers that you read about… You know, the successful ones that have so much going on, they need to escape.
One of my favorite podcasts is called “The Nerdist”. In a recent episode, they had Aziz Ansari on. The conversation is a must for anyone who fancies themselves a comedian, but more than that, anyone who wants to make their living by creating content. There are a lot of topics broached, but one thing Ansari said really struck me.
They were talking about the fact that Ansari writes a new hour of stand-up comedy on an annual basis. (This is pretty rare in the comedy world. Louis C.K. and Jim Gaffigan are known to be this prodigious, but few others have been able to pull it off.) As such, Ansari said that he’s constantly working on and thinking about his routine. When asked where he finds inspiration from, he said that he has to remember to “live life”. When his attention is devoted solely to creating comedy, it’s only a matter of time before he runs dry. He has to remember to keep his eyes open and pay attention to his life and the world around him in order to find funny things to talk about.
Maybe spirituality is the same way? The deeper I go trying make the blog perfect, or write a post about God that no one has heard before, the more isolated I become in a very narrow niche. It’s only after opening my eyes and paying attention to the world around me, I can remember that God exists outside of me, my mind, and my experiences. And that’s where I can find him.
So I’m going on vacation. Not because I’m so busy, or even because I’ve “earned” it, but because sometimes you have to do something different in order to get something new.