Taking Time Away

I’ve been working at taking time away to keep my brain fresh when it comes to my interests. For nine months out of the year (late August until early May) I spend at least once a week bowling. During the spring months that number can increase to 2-3 times a week, as I bowl in a lot of tournaments around New England. It’s a sport I’ve enjoyed immensely since I was 5 years old. My parents introduced me to bowling as we had a small 12 lane center growing up, and since they bowled 5 nights a week between various leagues, I would be at the center all the time. At the age of 6 I started bowling in the Saturday morning youth program while also keeping score for many tournaments and leagues. There was a time before automatic scoring, you see- and I think this helped me to observe great form and technique when it came to other bowlers.

I got the chance to bowl in college as well for a nationally ranked team, and travel all over the United States. I went from being a big fish in a small pond to a little fish in a huge ocean- but here is where my game moved up another couple of notches. Since then I bowl in local leagues and tournaments, I’ve been able to make some additional income from it as a result but I love the friendships and bonds that I’ve made through a sport that comes naturally to me.

When the summer comes I need a break from bowling, so thus I’m concentrating on spending more time with my children, doing day trips with them as well as taking in the sites around our community. I don’t think it’s always necessary to be on the go doing something 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It’s perfectly acceptable to slow down, enjoy yourself and pursue a new hobby or interest.

One of my other interests is writing about music. I learned how to play the keyboards as a teenager, but I’ve had a lifelong interest in heavy metal music. Iron Maiden started me on my journey through the realms of heaviness, and 27 years later I still have an undying devotion to the cause. I currently write for a couple of online websites where I get the chance to review new albums as well as interview some of my favorite artists. I’m excited about the changing technology and the ability to do interviews with video as I think this fuels the growth of the movement.

I do miss the physical development of a magazine. I enjoyed editing my own publication for years, and while I do enjoy the instant accessibility of reading about bands online and also hearing the music through sites like myspace, there’s something about holding onto a physical product that matters a little bit more to me. Somewhere down the road one of my goals is to run an in print magazine again- but I’m aware that you do need a lot of money behind the venture to make this a success.

While this post may seem scattered in thought, my varying interests allow me to never become bored in one realm. That’s why I believe it’s important to not over-extend yourself when it comes to your passions. Taking time away at least once a week will give your a brain a chance to calm down and possibly allow fresh perspectives to enter when you least expect them to.

What are some of your interests and what do you do to regain perspective when you want to take time away? I’m always eager to learn more about others and see if I can apply their wisdom and skills to my own life.

Matt

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