A Week Off Means Existential Crisis

I’m at the start of a week off from client projects work, due to it being the fifth week in a month, so I am of course teetering on the brink of a depressive episode and feeling aimless and introspective.

I wonder how common it is for men my age to realize that their work life has mostly subsumed their sense of self. I don’t even work as many hours as a typical salaried type, but even I feel at times that the totality of me that is valuable to society is the me that fixes computers and websites for a living, and everything else is chaff.

On a private Discord I run, one thing we’ve spent a decent amount of time talking about is how insidious the capitalist notion is that we are only the value of our work, and that we should all be allowed to feel worthless from time to time. I really struggle with doing that. Almost all time exists in a potential state of what I can accomplish with it. Even if that thing is “play a video game” I am very task-oriented in every aspect of my life. Simply existing isn’t satisfactory to me. It feels vaguely troubling, in fact. Like I’m wasting something precious.

I don’t know how much I want to change that. I want my time on this Earth to feel like I added value–well, there I go again, parroting capitalism. I want to… improve? things, make them a little better than they were when I found them? Even that feels like far too big of an ask in this era of decline and imminent eco-collapse. I guess at the end of the day, I can’t relax unless I feel like I’ve been productive with my time. My standards for being productive aren’t that high, though. Maybe just an hour or two a day even on weeks off will be enough to stave off the existential jeebies. We’ll put that to test this week.

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