I remember watching my mother whizz around the kitchen. Cooking, cleaning, opening cupboard doors, closing them again. All done in such a flurry. As if she was being timed by an invisible stop watch. I remember her watching over me as I made tea or attempted to construct a delicious sandwich at the age of 10. She would linger and tell me to 'be faster.' These are words that still linger within me today.
What does it mean to be productive? To be on the go 'non stop'. To check everything off your 'to do' list before midday? I've always felt a sense of urgency inside my veins. I can't sit still, and when I do, the guilt that rises inside the pit of my stomach is immeasurable.
I'm not alone. It has become a world phenomenon (mostly within entrepreneurs) to be driven - constantly. Hustle culture has set fire to fatigue and burnout and I have become tired of hearing 'work whilst they sleep' - as if this is the key to success. It fries my brain. When did we become so obsessed with being 'productive' that we now frown upon rest?
Where has peace disappeared to? Why has it become so rare to seek solitude, do nothing and just be? When did lying on the sofa in the still of the day, become such a judgemental sight?
My attitude to productivity not only came from my mother - but society also did a great job on placing 'possession' and 'money' before peace, love and memories. Now, I welcome a good work ethic and the desire to achieve, but I would seldom choose this over inner peace and joy.
Can we do away with the constant search for productivity and explore quieter realms. One day. I hope. One day.