Doom scrolling will not buy you time. Find more time for your hobbies if you really want them.
Have you ever sat in the staff room scrolling through your social media feeds and when you look up it's suddenly time to go back to work? Or have you been rushing around doing everything and find there's no time for you at the end of the day?
What if I told you that everybody, even you, could find 10 minutes of "you time" a day to do a hobby?
This isn't a "stay up til 4am" suggestion or even a "wake up at 4am to fit it all in". I suppose I'm talking about prioritising.
We all live different lives and experiences but generally, we are time poor. We're told to do more exercise, get more sleep, have clutter-free homes and relax. Even 5 a day is too hard to achieve sometimes. Sometimes it can feel impossible, especially if you have care responsibilities, work deadlines or general chaos to manage.
You have to find time or make it yourself.
I do believe there is a way to find time though. I've realised over the years that time isn't something anyone will give you- you have to find it or make it yourself.
If you've ever brought your knitting or crochet out in public with you, you might have heard the classic "I wish I had time to knit" or "I wish I could find time for hobbies". This was always said to me at work. I thought it was interesting how we were doing the same job, on the same pay but they had no time to do hobbies and I did. I was made to feel like a frivolous time waster because I spent 10 minutes of my unpaid (half of my lunch hour was unpaid), free time doing stuff I wanted to do.
I wasn't some kind of machine that just marked books at record speed and left myself with plenty of play time. I just didn't think it was right to let work dominate my life. I didn't take books home to mark because being called in to my manager's office to be asked "why aren't you taking work home with you to keep up?" was never, ever going to happen. Taking work home was something everybody did despite no one ever telling them to.
It wasn't in my contract to work during my time at home too, so I didn't do it. My students were happy. I planned lessons and marked work, I just didn't allow it to spill into all of my waking hours. It's a con. You do more work because you think it will free you up next week but the truth is, you'll spend next week doing work because you tricked yourself again. Also, in most workplaces that require some paperwork, getting the job done efficiently and effectively only means more work. Save some space for hobbies! I was still a student shift worker at heart. I clocked off because I loved reading, knitting, crochet, baking, sewing, gaming, gymming, spending time with my dog. The list of other things I wanted to do was endless. I had to make time for any of them.
If I was still teaching now, I actually would not have time to do work at home. I have three kids now. They take up most of my time. My work revolves around knitting and crochet but if I want to find time for other things I really have to make it happen and I do. Plus, clean folded laundry never, ever says thank you. The kids can find their own socks sometimes.
There is a famous saying:
Nobody on their deathbed has ever said "I wish I had spent more time at the office"- Harold Kushner
Spending more time at work or working is on nobody's regrets list. Not making time for hobbies, family, friends and other fun things probably is though.
In the time it takes to argue with a stranger on Twitter, you could be knitting.
When I was learning to knit around ten years ago, I heavily relied on Knitty Gritty by Aneeta Patel. It was in one section of the book where Aneeta addressed beginner worries of "I might not be able to keep up with this hobby" and she said that absolutely everybody could do two rows a day. If you cared about it enough, you could find two rows a day. You find time to argue with strangers on the internet, so you can find time to knit. End of. I don't want to hear any more excuses, ok?
Seriously though, that really stuck with me. The amount of time that you spend worrying about deadlines (or a big one for the anxious amongst us- deadlines that nobody has even set yet), scrolling through social media or watching cat videos, you could have done two rows of knitting or crochet. If you do that often enough, you could even work two rows whilst watching cat videos! If that's your thing of course.
No one is ever going to turn up and say "I've come to do all of your work and chores today so you can just relax and do some hobbies" because for most of us, that's not how life is.
If you really want it, you'll do it.
Now log off and go and do your two rows. Have a lovely day.