A little note on the beauty of pottering...
I promised some c-free content, but it is a rather commandeering aspect of our current life, and it generally over-shadows every thought, goal, plan or conversation.
But I will simply begin by alluding to the fact that we’re all spending an increasing amount of time at home.
While it’s both a blessing - staying in your pajamas, working from home, uncapped cups of tea - and a curse - restrictions, isolation, and anxieties; it is ultimately, a new normality we have to embrace for the foreseeable.
It’s ironic, that a generation famed for canceling plans and making Netflix & Chill the new night out, is having such a problem with staying within the confinements of their home.
Yet, we’ve reached a point where we’re all bucking up and settling into our new selves. Our new stay-at-home-selves.
While we busy ourselves with neglected tasks, aspiring projects, and Netflix binges, it’s important to take a breath, and simply chill the fuck out. Something we, as a generation and a society, seem to be unable to do.
It was by doing this, that I discovered the lost art of pottering. Simply, pottering about the place. God, it’s a dying activity. With endless feeds to scroll through and mountains of content to read or watch or listen to, pottering feels like a self-sabotaging timewaster.
And yet, the very definition of pottering is desirable and frankly, essential -
To occupy oneself in a desultory but pleasant way.
"I'm quite happy just to potter about by myself here".
With bountiful options and limitless choice, it’s no wonder we’re all consumed with anxiety- the philosopher Kierkegaard once mused; “Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom to chose”. And dizziness it is.
Whenever we choose something - be it a book, a tv show, a bar, a restaurant - we are always painfully aware of all the other potential options we have foregone.
Will this TV show be the most gripping? Will this restaurant give me food poisoning? Will I regret choosing this book?
And now, with time only to be spent at home - we’re stuck between procrastinating from what we should do, unable to decide what we want to do and unsure what we will do and three hours later we’re still watching videos of penguins jumping down the stairs.
So, Stop. Potter. Put on a jazzy playlist - don’t spend hours choosing, just put on your go-to jam or play a podcast - anything will do.
Lose yourself in your thoughts. Make a cup of tea. Reorganize your wardrobe. Eat peanut butter out of the jar standing in the kitchen. Dance. Water your plants. Doodle. Clean your mirrors. Light a candle. Change your sheets or simply make your bed.
Enter autopilot and see where your mind takes you - as long as that isn’t scrolling through your phone. Remember: Occupy yourself desultorily, but pleasantly.