Everyone says they want freedom.
Teenagers want freedom from parents.
Nine-to-fivers want freedom from the grind.
Entrepreneurs want freedom from the weight of leadership.
But when teenagers get freedom, they’re confronted by responsibility.
When nine-to-fivers break free from the grind, they shoulder the pressure of paying the bills.
When entrepreneurs sell their company, they fight the vacuum of boredom.
Can you actually be free? If you get freedom from one thing, will you desire freedom from something else? Is the feeling of needing freedom universal?
I ask this because since I quit my job a year ago, I've had the most freedom I've ever had. Do I feel the urge to do something? Yes, I feel I need to be productive, but I admit I don't know what being productive actually means.
Right now, exploring feels productive. Writing, building a website, day-to-day tasks like cooking, cleaning, and fixing things around the house. I've set a schedule that I hold myself to. But I don't strain against it, it doesn't feel like a limitation. At my old job, projects felt meaningless. They had no impact. I needed the carrot of a salary and the stick of getting fired in order to do anything. Now, if I don’t do my tasks, I feel like I’m missing something.
But what if these productive things don’t actually produce anything? Will I feel the urge to be free of them? Is a desire for freedom lurking somewhere inside me? Do I want freedom from the constraints that I've put on? I don't know. I don't feel constrained. I feel like I'm doing what I would choose to do anyway. Maybe you are free when you’re doing something you actually want to do. The key is being able to recognize that. Maybe. I’ll let you know in a year.