Balancing the Have-Tos and Want-Tos
posted by: mdolan2
In life, your time is taken up by things that fall into 2 categories: Have-Tos and Want-Tos. If you only do Have-Tos, then you have lots of stress and no joy in life. If you only do Want-Tos, then you starve to death. The first consideration is that we are all mortal beings with physical bodies that must be maintained. The second is that we have thoughts and feelings. We Have-To maintain our bodies but we Want-To maintain our minds and hearts. So we have jobs that allow us to get paid so we can maintain our bodies by providing a way to make money to buy food, clothing, and shelter. If we’re lucky, we have jobs that we enjoy, but even then the work gets boring and tedious and there are parts we don’t enjoy. If we’re not lucky, we work at jobs we hate. In that case it’s even more important to have time for Want-Tos. And in time away from jobs, there are Have-Tos. You Have-To clean the bathroom, pay bills, take the baby to the doctor, make dinner, etc. So what about the time available for Want-Tos that feed the brain and heart? You Want-To surf the net, read a book, watch tv, knit a sweater, play with your children, etc. But here comes the rub, we often spend so much time trying to do the fun things that the Have-Tos don’t get done. We surf the net while at work and the paper doesn’t get written or watch tv when we get home while something grows in the sink. Not that I have ever done this, of course. As a society we have this idea that we should do “Work first, play later” which no one I know does. Except me. I always wash dishes and clean the bathroom before sitting down to play. Always. And you can’t prove otherwise.
But how do we realistically balance out the Have-Tos and Want-Tos? I try to use a schedule as my main tool for doing this. But schedules get blown away by sudden Have-Tos. Like a son with an ear infection. Like a death in the family. Like a deadline that you aren’t prepared for. And if you have a family, you have multiple schedules to balance. So just balancing work is hard enough, but where do you fit in fun? It’s in the margins, really. So what little time you have for fun you have to make the most of. But most time for Want-Tos ends up being eaten up by surfing the internet or watching tv, while all the other fun things get left behind. That leads me to my revolutionary plan. I’m limiting non-work internet time to 2 hours per day. I’m also going to limit my tv watching time to 3 hours per day. I can do this! The black hole that is the internet and tv will be tamed and I think I’ll be a more productive Have-To-Doer and Want-To-Doer.