Please, uncommit me: Life at 20-something needs to slow down
This week, we have work happy hour, a sushi date with an old friend, an evening baseball game with family, a birthday party at the cabin, a neighbor's wedding out of town, a fundraiser with our favorite organization and zero time for ourselves.
Next week — well, next week looks about the same.
As millennials, we've been reminded time and time again that we must be involved. It's our duty to volunteer in the community, support friends and family, practice lifelong learning and have calendars jam-packed with resume-boosting activities.
At 20-something, we have the tendency to overcommit. But who can blame us?
Our future employers expect unrealistic amounts of experience, our commitment to friends and family determines our own web of support and while we may be young, we're already starting to think about the legacy we'll leave behind. Our eulogy virtues call for unending attention; we want our loved ones to remember a beautiful soul — a selfless human who did everything she could to make the world a better place.
It's no surprise that when we glance at the calendar, each day of the week is spoken for. Impromptu fun vanishes as quickly as the sands of an hourglass. Our Type A personalities nudge spontaneity out the door — we have events to plan, people to see and lives to slay.
But that's how it's supposed to be, right? We're young. Time and energy are easily replaced commodities.
Until they're not.
As much as we'd like to think we're spring chickens — promptly refueled by six hours of sleep — life still has a way of molding us into mother hens who eventually lose their steam. It's not until we're sick, self-diagnosed as temporarily insane and/or physically and mentally drained that we realize it's time to pump the brakes.
But at that point, it's already too late. We've already filled our planners and committed to events, activities and obligations beyond the realm of realistic. We think to ourselves, "I have to attend. She'll never forgive me if I miss this."
The reality is: sometimes being an adult means giving ourselves permission to cancel dates, reschedule happy hour and take a night to ourselves.
Better yet, if we learn to better guard our time in the first place — saying 'no' to the invitations that don't drive our passions or, at the very least, aren't 100 percent necessary — we'll find peace in the commitments we do make.
Life's too short to lose our sanity.
Perhaps we should learn from our wiser — sometimes a little more "boring" — elders on how to live life at turtle speed. Rumor has it, life passes in a flash.