Personal Space

Few things popped into my head today. Oh, I should write about this. Oh, that would be a good post.

I forgot both of those things.

I should be a better note taker. I use lists often now.

I forget things. Too many things to keep track of. I make lists. They’re very helpful. Todoist App is a game changer for me.

Ah yes!

Space! That was one of them.

Personal space.

Time to ourselves. We don’t get enough anymore. Mainly it’s our own fault. At least, for me that’s how it was.

Besides the obvious sports every night, I would spend entirely too much time on social media. Not being productive. Not thinking about anything about important. Simply scrolling.

Scroll.

Funny meme.

Scroll.

Basketball Highlight.

Scroll… scroll…scroll.

I’d look up and I’d wasted an hour of my time. Oftentimes even more than that.

I shut down my social media. Cold turkey. That didn’t work either. Now I felt disconnected. I wasn’t missing the endless memes and videos. I felt like I didn’t know what was going on in my family’s life in Turkey, or what my friends were up to. Granted, social media isn’t the place to actually see the truth in peoples lives. In any case, I felt like I was missing out.

I returned to social media but changed something. I deleted a lot of contacts. Over 700 on Facebook. Many on Instagram as well. I spend less than 10 minutes a day on both now. I can share pictures. I can see my family’s pictures. I feel connected yet I don’t feel consumed.

I think about my parents. They didn’t have these distractions. Let’s face it, unless we use it with extreme productivity, they’re distractions. Now, we go to the bathroom and we make sure to grab our phones. We don’t even think in there. Those moments of just looking up and around at our surroundings have disappeared.

If we are constantly looking at our phones. Constantly checking Instagram’s popular page. Life is passing us by. I would spend time on Instagram rather than dealing with a problem. It was the easiest way to procrastinate. It was easy to ‘pass time’ on social media than face my problems. It was an escape. An incredibly bad habit. I had to realize it, to kick it. Even now I find myself beginning to scroll. I make sure to stop myself.

I woke up today at 05:30. I never wake up this early. I did it because everyone is sleeping at 5:30. I could get up. Meditate. Read. Write. Think. Workout. Things I need to do for myself.

I felt great today. I need this time. I have a puppy. I have a fiancée. I have family. Friends. I love spending time with all of them, but at what cost?

We’re always pulled in all directions throughout the day. We need to have that time to be with ourselves, or else my brain goes 100mph as soon I get into bed. That’s when the stress starts to hit. That’s when I grind my teeth and wake up with a headache.

Time to myself is crucial. This is the way I grow. I read my goals aloud. A trick I picked up from Think and Grow Rich. Nearly every morning and some nights, I read my goals aloud to myself. I need to do this because I need to constantly be reminded of what is most important to me. I’m a forgetful person. If you ask me what I had for lunch 3 days ago I wouldn’t have any idea. Maybe you’re like me. If you forget your lunch you can forget other things. Your mind can become occupied with other things. It’s a great feeling to remind myself what I am working towards. It alters my actions throughout the day because I know why I am doing it. I know the end goal. I understand why I must complete that task. It’s certainly increased my productivity.  It all started with that time to myself.

I continually mention meditation but it is so helpful for me. Again, I need that time to do it. I can’t meditate when Niko is barking in my ear asking to go out. I am a firm believer that if we don’t train our minds then we can never truly appreciate the complexity of our mind.

Working out is another thing I need to do alone. I used to go with friends. They found ways to be productive with it but I would easily be distracted. I would go play basketball rather than workout. I would hang out with friends. Now that I work out alone I feel better.

I see this all the time. People that stop working out for a few weeks or months become less confident. I see it in their demeanour. Once they get back to it, they are happier. More confident. That’s how I feel when I work out. It’s a great feeling to know that if nothing else goes right that day, at least I did something to take care of my body. I need that time to myself.

At 25 my parents didn’t have to worry about all of this. Life simply wasn’t as fast paced. Call me an entitled millennial or Gen X or whatever term you want to use but that’s the truth.

When my dad went home from work at 25 that was it. Now, I could be eating dinner and receive an email. It doesn’t happen often to me but it does to many people my age. With the incredible pressures we face each day, it is more important than ever to reserve time for ourselves.

I’m not suggesting everyone wake up at 5:30 to meditate and write. Or, maybe, in a way I am. My point with this post is we all must treat ourselves better. It starts with us. If I treat myself well I can treat others well. To treat myself right, I need to make time for it. If it’s important to you, you’ll make time for it too.

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Author: Mehmet Akcagliyan

I am the Master of my Fate. I am the Captain of my Soul.

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