I get it, as we grow older and life slips into new directions, whether it be having kids, married or working full time. It can be hard to keep on top of the habits you love. Make no mistake the things we took for granted in our youth slowly slip out of our hands be it our health, weight, hair, or most importantly, time.
I put time last because that is irreplaceable.
For those of us who are now in our 30s, 40s, and furthermore, you know exactly what I mean. Years feel like months, months feel like weeks, and weeks feel like days. In my youth, there was always an endless summer. Summer holidays lasted a lifetime. The years moved at such a slow pace I found myself always wishing to be older. As my grandmother once told me “Never wish your life away!”
How she was right.
To anyone that surfs, surfing is a sacred time. Most people gain satisfaction from their hobbies within an hour or so but not surfing. Surfing is several things rolled into one. There's the cliché lifestyle bullshit, a means to keep fit, a way to stay sane, but most of all, surfing (for all the right reasons) is a time-consuming habit.
For those who surf you know exactly what I mean, surfing is not a quick fix habit. There's time and preparation involved in finding decent swell. There's always the commute. Surfing for endless hours at a time. A quick shore break then back out if possible. Then there’s the drive home. At a push, surfing is at the very least a habit that takes roughly 3 hours to fulfil.
While there's no real issue with this in today's world, 3 hours is costly. When you consider adult responsibilities, such as having children, working 50+ hours etc. 3 hours is a huge chunk. As an adult surfing can easily subside and be placed on the back burner of poor excuses and poor time management.
If you truly love surfing, then there's always time. In my own personal life, I have had to make so many adjustments just to dedicate time to surfing, not because I choose to but because I have to. I have a list of main priorities I need to accomplish on my weekends off which take up time. Categorizing a list certainly helps in where my true priorities lie.
The first suggestion would be this, go surfing early. Don’t be shy of the 5 am wake-ups to go surfing. Sacrificing a few extra hours in bed would be the ultimate strategy to get a full decent surf session in. If you’re someone who needs their 8 hours then be sure to go to bed early the night before as my dad always states “You can’t have the penny and the bun.”
With having a family, it can be easy to go surfing by having a beach day. For those on a budget, the beach is free and you get a chance to get a surf in, win-win. On top of this, you won't have to sacrifice family time as this sort of goes hand in hand with taking the whole family to the beach. Your partner might not always want to go to the beach every weekend but chances are the kids do.
Another suggestion would be to schedule just one day of annual leave every month during the workweek. This day is dedicated to you and surfing alone. Having this purposely blocked out not only gives you a reward to work towards but allows your family to know that this is your time and your time only.
Being an adult comes with its advantages and disadvantages the main one is being able or even feeling guilty for finding time for yourself. There should really be no feeling of guilt for wanting time to yourself, it is important. As we grow older it's important to prioritise your time accordingly. Always meet up with your friends for Saturday drinks? Make it fortnightly instead and use that time to go surfing.
While life does get in the way of sticking with the things we truly love, we are also suckers for not wanting to mix up our routine. Usually, 97% of the time there is always time for surfing if you’re willing to make a few small but major changes.
I don’t know about you but I plan to try and surf for as long as I possibly can, 70’s or even 80’s I’m definitely going to keep trying. While I haven't quite reached the retirement age just yet for now as I grow older, I have to keep making adjustments in my day-to-day life to fit in surfing. Being an adult sucks at times I really understand your frustration but what's worse would be to give up altogether because you feel that time is against you.
Enough inspiring bullshit just get out and surf. It's better to ask for forgiveness than permission.