In the throes of writing my Master’s thesis, it would be very easy for me to say “I don’t have time” for things like photography, blog-writing, reading, relaxing. But I’m still doing all of those things. Maybe proportionally less than I would be doing otherwise, but I still have time for them. And when I’m doing them, I’m not feeling guilty about not writing my Master’s thesis. I’m living in the moment and enjoying them, appreciating them, as fully as possible.
Because we never ‘have time’ – we make time. Even when we feel overwhelmed by all of the things we have to do, struggling to keep our heads above water – there’s always space for what we value most.
If something is important enough, we make time for it.
If I’ve gotten good at one thing during the last six years, it has been balancing all the things I want to do and need to do. I still procrastinate, I still have unproductive days when I’m trying to work but it just isn’t happening. But I know myself well enough to know when to push on, when to stop, and how I work most efficiently (unfortunately for this long-time night owl and nocturnal seabird researcher, this means getting up before the sun when I’m in writing mode).
And to do our best work, we need to take mental breaks so that things can simmer in the back of our minds, and new ideas and unexpected meanings can bubble out. It’s difficult with a time-limit, like a looming deadline. But we make time.