2 minute read    Published: 2022-07-01

This summer is an odd one. After returning from five months in the wilderness, away from technology, I have over two months with less responsibility and commitment than I've had in years. What am I doing with this gift of freedom? Not much, I'm ashamed to say.

What I would like to do is divide my time between connection with family and friends, work, preparation for college in the fall, and personal projects. However, I end up spending far too much time doing none of these things, but instead using addictive attention sucks like tv shows, movies, and news podcasts to entertain and distract myself. This is a normal and widespread problem in society, and I'm glad that I do not participate in the predatory social media environments (especially Instagram, Snapchat, and TikTok) which so many of peers use constantly, but there is still no excuse, no way to deny responsibility for my poor choices.

After five months of regular excericise and physical exertion, my body felt good and I wanted to challenge myself. Now, I am chronically underslept, I have aversion to difficult physical activity, and I spend most days completely sedentary. My metabolism has slowed to a crawl. This March, I could eat six to ten thousand calories in one day and be losing weight and feeling hunger pangs. Now, I sometimes eat just one small meal a day. I am eighteen years old.

My family has just one car, and I live in a rural place. This means that most of the time I am available to socialize, I am stuck at home due to lack of transportation. In order to get places without a car (by bike and/or bus), I need to have a large single block of time available, otherwise the time spent in transit isn't economical.