On my previous post I said “free-time”, and I might have mentioned it before, but I don’t know if what I call “free-time” is the same thing you call “free-time”. The reason why I’m bringing this up is because the concept of “free-time” has been changing over the years, and not in a good way.

Most people today, especially in our modern societies, think of free-time as an organized time where you do stuff you like hanging out with friends, going shopping, playing the guitar, writing a story, scheduled activities, etc. (whatever you like to do). However, this is not exactly “free-time”, note how I said organized, that’s going to be important.

For me, free-time is an unscheduled time where you just happen to have nothing happening. Then, once you get to this free-time, you decide to do something, whether it be writing, playing the guitar, meeting with friends, etc. The main difference between this and what I said before is that what people usually do is that they have an agenda, and when they actually have free-time, they fill it up with something, such as classes, activities, scheduling to hang out with a friend, etc. The thing that does not make this free-time is that it is planned, free-time by definition means that there is nothing planned. Therefore, when you plan to hang out with a friend, it is not free-time. Free-time is when you have time to improvise what you’re  going to do.

Now, what problems has this caused. The scheduling of everything in every-day life has caused an extreme amount of stress in peoples lives, because everyone is so concerned about doing things according to the schedule, and they don’t take the time to sit down and relax. This is why children don’t know what to do these days when they’re not on the computer, doing scheduled activities, or at school. It’s because they are used to being told what to do, not being able to decide for themselves, it’s because they have an agenda they have to follow. That’s why the television is such a problem, why it consumes so much of the average person’s daily life. I solved this problem by just not watching television, period.

Now, we may think that people were always so busy as we are (with scheduled “free-time” and such), but our definition of free-time, being a scheduled time to do things we want, is actually fairly recent. Not only that, but we have had less and less free time as we advance in civilization. People 200 years ago had more free-time than we do now, and 200 years before that the same. All the way back to the agricultural revolution, which was when we began to reduce our free-time. Before then, people had a lot of free-time, to the point that they only had to go gathering food for about 3 hours a day. Hunting took longer, but the meat lasts way longer, and it’s what everyone in the tribe loved the most. So they didn’t have to go hunting every day.

All in all, we have been losing our free-time because we schedule everything. Whenever we have free-time we fill it up with something. So the best way to avoid the stress is to have a life with more time where you don’t have anything planned, where you are essentially bored. Then, when you are bored, find something to do that does not involve the television or the computer or anything that is just passive consumption. Learn to play an instrument, start to write a novel, learn to dance, do something that isn’t just sitting and not doing anything. However, don’t schedule what you’ll do in this time, just do it when the time comes.