Where do you draw the line between pushing yourself to be better and wasting your time on something that’s not “you”?
This is a question I’ve been asking myself lately – partly because writing for Stratejoy has me examining my life in a way I never have before and partly because moving to London has meant a slew of new experiences.
For example, a very specific British Experience: Drinking. Lots and lots of drinking.
I’ve always been a bit of a lightweight, meaning I rarely drink because when I drink I get CRUNK. Not that I have any problems with crunkage. While I may actually remember college, there are a smattering of drunk-with-the-girlfriends-experiences that are very fond memories indeed. I just don’t get crunk often.
Fast forward a few years and here I am in London where my housemates usually have a drink every night. Events are ALWAYS held in pubs, free booze is the only reason anyone will go anywhere and, well, the British take their beer very seriously.
Meaning I often feel left out. Sure, no one cares I’m not a big drinker, but I’m also not a huge fan of being the only sober one out.
So what do I do? Not go? I’ll occasionally opt-out of a night at the pub but I feel like I should go. Be social! Make new friends! Live a little! But what if my “living a little” is actually drinking a cup of peppermint tea while I read a Sookie Stackhouse book? What then? Am I not adventurous?
Or am I just…. Me?
Don’t get me wrong, I love adventures. One of my favorite things to do is get lost in a new city. I want to not know anyone. I love the fact that I’ve done everything from work at a sex museum to a Mail Boxes Etc. I like risk and spontaneity and change and even the occasional failure.
What I don’t like are clubs. Or hanging out with more than five people at once. Or anything involving loud noise. I don’t like political discussions. I don’t like being wrong. I’m not a huge fan of “culture” and find any art made after 1900 yucky.
I have no desire to visit Asia. Most hippies annoy the crap out of me. I’m neither religious or “spiritual”. Whatever that means. I hate going to concerts, dancing and really don’t understand the appeal of Lady Gaga. I’ve never been blackout drunk. I don’t want to experience the thrill of bungee jumping. I don’t want to eat something really gross just so I can add it to my “life list.”
So what does this make me? I’d like to think I’m an adventurous person but as I get older I learn what I like and what I don’t like. A friend said this might be “limiting” and I should give things a try regardless of my preconceptions. But what if I don’t want to waste my time? What if I want to spend what time I have on this earth doing things I know I want to do? Is admitting this like punching all the “authentic life” girls in the face or is this what self-awareness is REALLY all about?