Sorry, I’m in the Time Chamber

I want to talk a little bit about what it feels like to be part of Remote Year. And more specifically; why it feels like I’m on a different planet.

It took me a few months, but now I’ve finally found the right analogy. Bear with me, cause this is some serious 90’s retro shit. Do you remember Dragonball Z? (for everyone outside of the 29–35 age range, google it. It’s anime characters fighting. I watched it for a few months when I was 16.) Now, in the series the main characters sometimes encounter enemies that are too powerful. Seems like a problem? Not really: they have a Time Chamber at their disposal.

The Time Chamber can be found on top of a long pillar, way up in the clouds. On the outside it has a small building as an entrance, but inside it is a white, seemingly endless space with varying air pressures, temperatures and increased gravity, allowing for more diverse training possibilities. But more importantly: one day on earth equals one year in the Time Chamber. So they’re gone for one day, while they get a years’ worth of training. When they come out they’re ready to kick that enemy’s ass with their hands behind their backs.

I feel the same way. In the last three months I’ve learned more, experienced more and thought more than I’d otherwise do in a much, much longer time (shout out to existential conversations in the sauna — you know who you are!). I’ve entered this Time Chamber called Remote Year, and I’m quickly getting ready for my future without letting much time pass. I have gotten to know my priorities, I have a much clearer focus, I am learning skills, a language, I am getting fit, fed and cultured. It’s priceless — truly, truly priceless.

But the downside is that my perception of time is equally distorted. Things with deadlines are fine, but as soon as I don’t plan on doing something like calling friends or even just getting a haircut, I don’t because I don’t feel if it’s been too long anymore. I get submerged by the experience, and not until I happen to get to the surface to get a quick breather do I realize that I haven’t spoken to even my best friends for some time. Add to that the fact that I, at the very least temporarily, added 75 really cool people to my social environment (where science says you can handle 150), and it becomes clear it’s quite challenging.

All I can say for now to those who feel neglected is… I’m sorry. I am in the Time Chamber. I will be back. Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger.

(this blog was originally posted in August 2016, three months into it. If you want to read my thoughts at the end of Remote Year, read my other blogs. For example this one: The Hidden Value of Remote Year.)

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Want more? How about reading what I felt coming back after Remote Year?

The Uyuni Salt Flats in rainy season look a little bit like the Time Chamber (if it had weather). Photo of me by Eddie Contento.