The Timing of Priorities

As much of a hermit as I am, I can always count on friends and family to allow me to have moments where I’m not constantly worrying about myself. While it’s getting easier and easier to find moments of calm with myself as I mature, I can unequivocally turn to my relationships to guarantee good times.

It’s a funny concept, time. As a kid, I was always after that easy money- handed to me just like that. Nowadays, while I still look forward to Tet every year, it’s for a deeper reason than before. Sure, family events were always fun. Tet was special because I got money. Now, Tet is special in and of itself. Tet is the one holiday my family celebrates as Vietnamese persons. When we get together during this time of year, it feels magical. And the tradition currently remains- I’m still part of the second generation, so I still receive envelopes and that’s all well and nice, but really only for the act of receiving. The amount inside doesn’t matter anymore. It’s the concept, the act, the gratitude, and the love. Perhaps I’ve concluded this years ago, but only now, this past New Years, had it dawned on me that this was the source of my happiness.

When one goes into hibernation, it’s easy to forget how fast time can pass by. Before you know it, it’s been so long since you’ve seen people, you don’t remember the last time. I got to go for a weekend of snowboarding this season up in Big Bear. The snow was unreal- I fell on the slopes and just laid down to let myself slide down the hill, it was just that soft. In a moment of serenity, I had woken up to the sound of snow outside the cabin, then later went outside before everyone else was awake to enjoy nature for nature’s sake. There was fresh snow and air all around. Besides these moments, being among friends was a nice reminder of how extroverted I can be- in other terms, my batteries do sometimes recharge after hanging out with my peeps.

It had been a while since I’d taken a trip, even just a day trip. I’ve been so caught up in dealing with classes and my future career, nutritional changes and experiments, the political climate (sometimes, I just can’t deal), and being 25 in general (in the sense of dealing with all these evolving ideas in my head)…I just didn’t prioritize hangouts. Weekends were just too busy. Now, I feel like I’m able to take a step back, I’m in more of a routine, so I know my schedule for a while now, since school started. I’m excited to be planning more trips- this time, I’m basing it around the time I have available. For example, I have a week for Spring Break, so I want to take advantage of this. Now that Spring and Summer are coming around again, I can plan more outdoor activities.

Getting back into the swing of student life has been more challenging than I first expected. I forgot how expensive classes were and I forgot how much time I need to dedicate to classes, not just during it but throughout the week as well. Balancing a schedule with multiple obligations isn’t something new to me, but I had become complacent in recent years, unfortunately. Luckily, I’ve come to a conclusion in these years not to be overly critical and regretful in times where my anxious mind runs amok; instead, it’s best to look forward, only looking back to learn from my mistakes. This has allowed me to be more proactive in achieving my goals.

I actually started watching TV again. It started with having on Netflix on in the background and it turned into me making a list of the shows I want to watch and catching up with everything. I actually did not miss TV at all. I stopped watching at the start of the fall season last year in an experimental attempt to see if I could use that time in other pursuits. At the start, I spent that time rewatching some of my old favorites, so it wasn’t really working out. However, I felt a little more freedom not being beholden to a show every night. Even now, I decided I don’t need to watch TV weekly, but instead, I’ll binge watch seasons. And not even this, I only want to watch TV now if I’m doing something else at the same time. I like passive watching and I’ve stopped caring about “being behind” or spoilers. Although my experiment didn’t technically last as long as I wanted (until around June when seasons usually ended, or May when Sense8 season 2 comes out), I can still wait until then to watch any shows. I decided to watch shows I was meaning to watch and have already ended their seasons; anything on Netflix was fair game because it’s just so easy.

I’m glad I’m able to not be strict with myself in terms of being vegan. As much as I can, I want to do this for myself, but I know during family events or vacations, it’s currently more convenient to try where I can, but not restrict myself completely. And I know, it sounds bad to be partial-vegan or giving into personal convenience over animal suffering. However, in these situations, the animals have already suffered and these products already bought- I honor the animals’ sacrifice by eating, not wasting. I am hyper-aware of how difficult these dietary changes are for me, so I’m trying not to be a perfectionist because I know I will fail and when I fail, I don’t want to give up, but to keep trying.

Perhaps the biggest thing I’ve been working on is better time management. Mostly, it’s just me being aware and then correcting myself when I feel/see moments where I’m slipping. It’s about asking “What could I be doing right now?” and “What do I want to prioritize?” I find most days are pretty full, so any small amount of time is a reward in the form of a respite. But I must remember not to overdo it; just like naps, a little is great, but it’s easy to fall in too deep and have too much of a good thing. Weekdays are pretty straightforward now with school and more work, but weekends are hit and miss. I can lose full days being seemingly unproductive overall, or I can figure out everything I want in one sitting on a Friday night in. I do like feeling busy though because those brief breather in-between moments are all the more sweet.

As always, just a general reminder: not sorry about being a twat, but thank you for caring about me regardless. Love you guys, thanks for reading.

~ by Btab on 19 February 2017.

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