With less than two weeks before I embark on my summer journey halfway around the world to Sri Lanka , I’ve been giving this blog some serious thought. I’ve asked all the logistic questions that come to the mind of Type A individuals – like how will I post when I will only have intermittent internet access? And, how will I charge my laptop without a plug adapter? If I am going to be honest, though, it’s not the logistics of blogging abroad that seem most troubling to me. My reason for seriously considering taking a blogging hiatus runs much deeper.
When I started doing yoga, I learned that one of the keys to relaxation and meditation is thinking about one’s breathing. When you focus on your inhales and exhales, you focus less on the external – less on what is going on around you – and more on your body and how you feel. Since I am always thinking about how I can apply life lessons to scheduling, I tweaked this idea of refocusing just a bit. When I am having trouble paying attention, I think about thinking. When I’m having a bad day, I think about feeling better. When I’m feeling stressed about getting things done, I think about scheduling. I bring everything inward, narrowing in on something that relates to what I should be focused on, and block out the unnecessary distractions. Thinking about scheduling – it’s my anti-procrastination tool.
And, thinking about scheduling (which with three jobs and a full class-load is pretty much all the time) has helped me write this blog. When I’m stressed, I think about a topic related to scheduling, i.e. how am I going to manage to get all of this stuff done? I use that topic and those thoughts to formulate a post, and voilà – a blog is born. This blog, I guess I’ll admit, has been somewhat of a coping mechanism for me.
Thinking about scheduling – it’s what I do. It’s who I am. But, what if I didn’t have to schedule? What if I didn’t have three jobs and a full class load? What if my friends, who are always hounding me to hang out, were halfway around the world? Better yet, what if I was? Would I have to think about scheduling? Would I have to use this coping mechanism to deal with stress? And if not, then on what topics would I post?
When I tell people I am going to spend the summer in Sri Lanka, they usually respond by saying they think the experience will be amazing. “You’ll find yourself over there,” they always say. My hope is precisely the opposite. As I embark on my journey I hope not to find myself, but rather to lose myself. I hope to build a different me – start anew like a phoenix. The only way I know how to do that is to take away all the crutches on which I lean, to separate myself from everything I know, and to deprive myself of all the things to which I might cling. So the bottom-line would be, then, no television, no pillow, no thinking about scheduling, no blogging. It’s a crazy idea, I know. I’m still not even sure it’s a good one. What I do know is this summer will change me, and that’s all I want.
This blog will stand, nonetheless, as a testament to my crazy work-filled college years. I may even come back to it when I return to the states – who knows? For now, though, I hope the two years worth of posts I have accrued will be enough to help you in your own balancing act.