I have been driving myself crazy. It seems like I have been trying to find sustainable success online forever, yet it is still a mirage on the horizon. It is all I think, work and worry about. Coupled with working in a tiny space with little light, I have been a little shut in – unable to release myself from the cocoon of pressure.
Resisting the switch off…
After a crazy few weeks of work, I had a friend’s wedding this weekend that required a trip to the West of Ireland. My single biggest question was whether I should bring the laptop or not. Seriously, this wedding was just 24 hours out of my neurotic, irrational online world and I had considered bringing it along ‘just in case’. You would swear that I was a brain surgeon and not a website designer, that clients couldn’t function should something go wrong on their website and would have to wait until Monday for a fix.
Thankfully, common sense prevailed and I travelled west sans laptop. It was a good first step, yet I still felt the need to check email on my smartphone, periodically, despite not being able to action anything about any potential crisis. Every time I open that email app, I get a rush of anxious irritation and curse myself for looking – what is the point, other than to tie myself in knots of frustrated helplessness.
A breath of air
Sunday morning, walking down the Salthill prom, nursing a minor hangover, I had something of an epiphany – I need to slow down to speed up. I don’t need to work harder – that just is not possible for me – I need to spend less time working and more time in the air. The best time of my life was travelling the west coast of Ireland in a campervan for 3 months. I had been putting so much pressure on myself to afford another camper that I was living the exact opposite life – in a basement, hooked up to a laptop stressed about pixels instead of exploring the exceptional country around me.
Strolling arm in arm with himself, enjoying an enormous 99 cone and the smell of the sea air mingled with warmth of the sun, everything seemed clearer and life was brighter. Surely, that is what we work for, and somehow I had forgotten that – again.
I can’t go cold turkey and cut off the technology completely but I can commit to less computer time and more space to breath and that is just what I intend to do.
Lovely Salthill Promenade – June 2017: