Today I’m going to talk about something deeply personal: I don’t feel like doing anything. Now, everyone has their moments when they just want to lay in bed without stressing out about one thing or the other. But, for me, feeling meh about existence in general has been a consistent trend for the past 3 or 4 years. I feel like writing out my thoughts and plans might help me keep myself accountable and finally change something. Here goes.
First of all, I definitely have no idea why I constantly feel like doing nothing. It might be depression. It might be chronic fatigue. It might be vitamin D deficiency. Or it might just be me feeling overwhelmed by life and deciding not to do anything about it, except for finding excuses. I am, decidedly, great at making grand plans, not sticking to them, feeling miserable about it and ending up trying to find reasons to feel better about my lack of motivation and discipline.
So what exactly is happening?
Thank God for the fact that high school felt like a breeze to me. I didn’t have to put too much effort into studying. Call it being somewhat gifted or a natural. Unfortunately, the gift didn’t hold up when it came to university. Having to actually learn constantly by myself is a constant nightmare and I keep trying to put as little effort into my education as possible. This translates to not actually trying to understand what I’m being taught, looking up the solutions for homework problems without thinking too much about them myself beforehand and other strategies that are, obviously, gimmicky and harmful. I know this is not the right direction: I have exams in two months and I know nothing. Yet, I can’t seem to be able to pull myself together, despite being fully aware of the consequences of my actions on my future.
I started this blog with the intention of writing daily or at least 3-4 times a week. I wanted to study journalism at first (and maybe even write and publish a book), because I love writing, so a blog seemed like a perfect outlet for this passion of mine. I thought to myself that studying abroad at a great university is quite the experience and – considering I didn’t find too many personal accounts of such experiences online – that writing everything on a blog for the world to see might be helpful both for me and for others that plan on taking up the same challenge. As you can see, though, I ended up writing 3-4 times a year, despite the fact that there are many interesting topics that could be brought into the spotlight and that people might be interested in. Maybe not enough topics to fill 4 articles every week, admittedly, especially since my lack of drive prevented me from joining any societies this year, but still.
I used to have some other hobbies as well. I particularly enjoyed drawing and reading. And, although I keep buying books and drawing supplies, I cannot bring myself to actually read anything or, God forbid, start painting again. I’ve always lowkey felt interested in theatre as well, so I decided to take the plunge and sign up for an audition for a play a few months ago, only to give up my spot on the day because I didn’t feel like trying anymore.
What might be the problem?
I think part of my behaviour is due to lack of confidence in myself. Why keep trying to study when I’m surrounded by geniuses that are always going to be better? Why write if no one will read it because it’s not interesting? Why draw or act when I’m probably not talented enough to do anything worthy? While it’s true that I have many brighter people studying the same course as I do and that I’m no Dostoevsky or Picasso, it’s also true that I can better myself in all these areas if I try to constantly practice and learn. Despite knowing this, I keep feeling that, because I’m never going to be as good as the aforementioned people (and many other geniuses), I shouldn’t even try to get closer to their unattainable level. I keep getting myself hyped for a new challenge (such as the blog) and then tear myself down to a place where I don’t feel capable of facing the challenge anymore (you’re never going to be a popular blogger, you should do something else with your time, your life and opinions are not interesting to anyone else).
I also think I rely too much on motivation to do anything. I only feel motivated to study once or twice a term, I only feel like running once every few months, I never truly feel like drawing anymore. Motivation is such a volatile concept that relying on it is a recipe to disaster. Instead, I know I should become more disciplined. The question is: how? Every new year, I make a list in my head of all the habits I want to change. I only stick to it for one or two weeks. Whenever I realise the dire state I’m in, I tell myself that I’m gonna turn everything around beginning next week. I never do. Even for menial tasks that take 5 minutes, such as washing the dishes, I keep procrastinating to the best of my abilities.
One other problem is how indecisive I am about everything. Should I study for maths or mechanics? Should I try to draw something or read this book? Having many options overwhelms me and, rather than making a decision that might be wrong, I prefer postponing it.
What’s the plan?
I read everything that can be read on the internet about becoming more disciplined, putting an end to procrastination, studying effectively and many other subjects of the sort. I can probably start my own website with all the advice I know by heart, even write a few great e-books about changing your life for the better. The knowledge is there, but there is one big problem: how should I convince myself to actually apply it? I have no idea. But I know that, starting today, I’m going to try my best. Yes, I just told you how I keep telling myself that, but maybe, just maybe this time will be different, maybe I’ll discover the secret of getting into a productive mindset. The secret of making yourself feel like doing something. So this is it, this is me promising to try my best once more. I’ll keep you posted.