Going with the Frickin’ Flow.

The Pandemic, The Lock down and the Pseudo-Productivity urge.

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Photo by krisna iv on Unsplash

Let’s start with some stretches.

Raise your hand, or nod, or make some affirmative action if your answer to any of the following questions is “Yes.”

During the lock down,

Did you learn a new skill?

Did you develop a productive habit?

Did you read a book?

Did you work out and get fit?

If you affirmative-actioned for any of the above questions, good — you’re making great use of the extra time you have during the lock down.

But I want to talk to the people who didn’t — the people who just stood there like a log while reading the questions because all of their answers were “No.”

I love you guys. Tell me how you spend your time.

Let’s face it. You must have seen a lot of posts and stories on social media where people exhibit their cooking, origami skills or how they trained their dog to leave a one star review for TikTok in the App Store. While I’m all in for the people spending their time exploring and getting creative, I’m here to talk about the other side of these videos — the fact that a lot of times, these videos and updates make the creators feel good, but there are a small portion of the viewers who are left feeling low about themselves.

Chances are you can already relate to what I’m saying.

I feel you, and it is okay. It’s natural — you know, when you’re just letting time pass without actually doing something that people would usually call ‘productive’. You’re binge watching a Netflix series, playing games, and munching away pretty much the whole day — and your sleep schedule follows a different time zone, like your VPN.

The thing is, you know you can do a lot of these things that you see on the social media — but you just don’t wanna. Or maybe a part of you wants to, but you just won’t. Now, if this was a motivational, inspirational, “If you want to make the world better, start by making your bed” kind of article, I would’ve asked you to get out of your comfort zone and start working your ass off to become closer to the person that you are in your dreams. But we’re not inspirationalists here. Not a word, Don’t look it up.

I’m here to say that it is totally cool to let time pass on your terms. As long as you’re doing good and feeling good about yourselves, it is cool.

Why? Because we aren’t prepared for this.

Nobody is. Nobody was. Hence nobody can tell you what to do and what not to do because there isn’t a call for productivity right now. What’s there, is actually sudden realization of puny we all are in front of nature. Kind of like when Hulk smashed the fuck out of Loki and said “Puny Gods”. (Okay maybe not kinda, that’s exactly what’s happening.)

The Puny God reference for the non-Avengerous people.

If this was about to happen to you, you’d just stay away from Hulk — somewhere indoors — and maybe wash your hands. Because that’s all that is required of you now, to brace yourself and see to it that you make it to the end of the epidemic. The only thing that matters is that you’re healthy — in the end, healthy and healthy with a degree from Coursera doesn’t make a difference.

To be (productive) or not to be.

To put it in simple words, productivity is subjective. What’s productive to me maybe bullshit to you — and vice versa. This is why there is no rulebooks for being productive. Focus on doing what makes you happy, what drives you, and gives you a feeling that you’re making progress — again, progress can be you finishing the season finale, or increasing the number of pushups you can take — it varies from person to person.

Be sure to make yourself occupied — and yes, Netflix qualifies for occupancy. In fact, everything qualifies for occupancy. If it makes you happy, do it. If doing nothing makes you happy, do nothing.

Because these are confusing times — and sometimes when life gives you lemons, you ignore the fuck out of it.

Written by

Grad, Software Engineer, Writer. Published in The Startup, and The Ascent

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