We want it all.
We want happiness, success, and good health.
There is nothing bad about it.
This is how it should be. We should have it all.
But our actions are not always reflective of what we want.
Because if we want to be healthy then we should be in bed sleeping one or two hours before midnight. This will allow the glymphatic system to get rid of waste from our brains.
The glymphatic system is a waste clearance system, that functions during sleep and is largely disengaged during wakefulness. [National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine].
The glymphatic system mainly removes amyloid beta, the protein that accumulates in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients.
Depth of sleep also matters for our well being but we can address it only after start sleeping early and enough.
And, if we want to be happy then our well being should be a priority for us. But the work is a priority in our lives for most of us including me.
But I am ready to eat my own dog food. That’s why right after I finish this article I am closing the laptop and getting ready to go to bed.
There is no arguing that we need to work to live up to standards that we have set for ourselves. The problem emerges when work starts taking precedence over what we know as life.
But this is not a hopeless situation.
We can work, and still find time to play, nurture our passions and be with our families. We don’t need to act as idealists. We can be practical about it.
An idealist solution is what you see in stories like the Rock, Pebbles, and Sand that you can see below.
While this is a valuable analogy but you may not be able to implement it right away, more so if you are on an ambitious ride or if you need to pay your dues at the corporate altar every day.
If you are in such situations then there may be days when if you focus on the big rocks of your life you may leave less time for pebbles and sand which may have an important place in life like something you need to do to pay the bills. You can’t ignore it.
A Viable Alternative
Start by deciding the kind of life you want to live and then build everything around it.
For now, your work or career may be very important so you can invest more time on those most days. But do it with the understanding that the most important things in your life are family, health, and relationships and even if you can’t devote hours on these – don’t ignore them totally.
And, irrespective of the time you spend on these, put at least one of them first in your day.
Health seems to be a simple choice. It can be as simple as taking a 10-minute walk or sitting for a 5-minute meditation session. You can also do both of these with a family member, and make sure that you are neither ignoring your health or relationships. You can do this 4-5 day a week and devote a lot of time for your ambitions and needs on those days.
And, rest of the days – invest more in your health by taking care of your body by massaging it, fasting and spending relaxed device-free time and being truly present with your family members. You can also invest time in your passions on these days.
This way you will not be forced to choose either this or that.
To be realistic, to get more out of life you may have to cut down on some objects or activities. If it comes to that, then get rid of objects or activities with zero return on time invested.
For example, to take care of your health you may cut down on soda/soft drink. To create time for important activities you may cut on your TV/Netflix time. Don’t eliminate them if you don’t want to but cut back on them because six hours of Netflix does not give you six times when you compare it to watching Netflix for one hour.
All of this starts with thinking about the life you want to live and then prioritizing some of it in your days to start with this new design.
Hope you’ll some time to do it today or one of the days soon 🙂