You don’t realize how much of your sense of self is bound up in how you use your time until you have a lot of it.
Whatever makes it go in…
I think of my work as what used to be called women’s work: knitting, quilting. Women were busy cooking, raising children, so they had to have an activity that they could pick up and put down. A quilt may take a year, but if you just keep doing it, you get a quilt. Or if you knit one and pearl two, and you believe in the process, eventually you’ll make a sweater. There’s some aspect of that in me.
My consistent experience has been that the more routine I can make the basic practical aspects of my life, the more I am able to be energetic—and spontaneous—about intellectual and other things.
From an interview with the creator of Brain Pickings:
When you intercept the rumination process with something that requires your full attention—that’s stimulating and absorbing, that places a demand on your intellectual focus—you don’t get to ruminate. In a way, it’s a mental health aid to be able to do that so much. My routine, what I do, it just feels like home. It’s my comfort food.
At long last you are all consumer, endlessly provided for and endlessly entertained. But if, deep down, you have reconciled yourself to your condition, which is not to play but to work, you know that without work you cannot fully inhabit your humanity.