One of the benefits of getting older is the possibility of deepening knowledge of one’s self. In my own case, I am finally coming to terms with the fact that I have done my best to overcompensate for the apparent freewheeling nature of being a freelance worker by being really disciplined about time management and making sure that I feel like I am being productive, almost all the time.
What have I felt the need to prove? Because of my upbringing and the work ethic of people I grew up with, I have felt the need to certify to myself and others that I’m not living a lazy lifestyle. Unlike many artists who were brought up by artistic parents, I had to struggle with mine to embark on my chosen career path. Even my peers from school and university days are of a different mindset, so I have few contemporaries to share experiences with.
Because of this, I haven’t always made allowances for myself with regard to relaxation. I have done my fair share of hanging out in interesting places, with stimulating people, but I haven’t thought much about the benefits of switching off and functioning outside of my work mode.
As a result, I have acquired an extensive vocabulary of experiences that I can draw from as an artist. I don’t have regrets about the fact that I have done this. I do feel I have a lot to learn about making the most of leisure time, however.
I know for a fact that my idea of rest and relaxation is very different to what I see other people doing. I have been involved in group discussions where I’ve had disagreements with folks who enjoy nightclubbing or going to parties for example. I understand that social gatherings can be restful for some, but after a very long phase of taking a professional interest in them, I came to the conclusion that my need to unwind requires a different sort of activity.