Recently I have found myself with much more time on my hands than I have ever really had before. This to me, is a lot to take in because I am someone who likes to keep themselves occupied even with mindless tasks. When I think of being busy, I think of my ex boyfriend who would be the definition of keeping busy. When we were seeing each other he was balancing his main role of assistant manager at a retail store, as well as working in radio, doing his own podcast, studying full-time at university and all the other family roles etc.. It really was a wonder to think how we even managed to see each other so often. I would find myself comparing myself to him because I used to think I was busy: working casually a couple of times a week, studying and family, friend roles etc.. What I always left out of the equation was my intense dedication to my studies which meant hours upon hours of study each week. It also did not consider my complex mental health, having to maintaining a healthy mind was no easy task. I would keep myself busy throughout my day in a different way by studying or organising uni work, running errands, doing the shopping, occasionally cleaning the house, baking, attending some appointment etc..
In my mind, it’s hard to not make everything a competition and busy-ness levels may sounds silly but I still manage to compare myself with other people. This is an unhealthy habit that I have developed which, I need to constantly check. It shouldn’t matter how ‘busy’ you are in order to justify anything. I am not lecturing anyone but myself on this because it runs true to many of my inner conflicts specifically around comparing myself to others. It’s hard to change something that is ingrained into you but I need to at least try because it isn’t really helping mental state.
Usually I find myself playing in my role as a student but as I am taking a hiatus from my studies until further notice, (until next year) I found myself with more time than I am used to. As someone who quietly prides themselves committed to their academic studies and time spent studying or doing things related to study, this is quite the transition. Although my reason for taking a break were out of my control, what I do with my time is largely in control.
As I was keen to keep my academic side pleased and healthy, I decided to enrol in an online course. I decided to study a course online as suggested by someone. There were lots of options, including from every subject you can think of, different forms and lengths etc. The one that took my fancy is called The Health Effects of Climate Change through Harvard. It is a free course with the option of paying a little extra for some benefits. There were lots of intriguing factors in the subject matter. Many people close to me will know of my passion for things related to the environment and especially climate change and its effects in general. Something that I am equally as passionate about is health. I could go on and on about the reasoning as to why I decided to choose this particular course and maybe I will in another post. The course is flexible and self-paced meaning that there are no lecture times or similar pressures.
Doing a course that is so closely related to what I am passionate is good way to keep myself busy. I haven’t done enough of it to give you a full insight into my feelings of it but so far, I am really enjoying it. Hopefully I’ll write some more posts as I progress through the course. Who knows.
(featured image courtesy of NASA Earth Observatory seen in my course – the thousands of fires of 2010 in Eastern Europe caused a huge amount of air pollution. This is a satellite image taken from space of the smoke in Russia.)
clara x 2020