La Voz de Galicia – June 21, 2024 →

Cristina PatoI was talking with my mother about what I had planned for the day and about how little enthusiasm I had for doing things I don’t particularly enjoy, like responding to emails or dealing with the office work that comes with being a freelancer in the arts world. I was telling her that what I really wanted was to be able to write every day, but the reality is that writing probably won’t be what puts food on the table in the future, and that’s why there are days when I feel everything else is more important, and I leave writing for the last moment of the day, when I have neither the mental space nor the energy to do it. Then she was silent for a moment, and thinking, she murmured: «I didn’t get paid to raise you, but I always found the strength and motivation to do it.»

The conversation wasn’t long, but it left me pondering all week. Motivation is quite a curious thing, something I still haven’t figured out, despite it being the driving force of my life. I constantly wonder how we manage to do the things we want to do despite the circumstances, and how we motivate or demotivate ourselves along the way. I also wonder what reasons make us put all our energy into what we have to do and what reasons make us leave what we want to do for a later time that sometimes never comes. I suppose that survival and the fear of uncertainty make us decide to switch to the autopilot of life, and we end up leaving aside everything we consider unproductive, without stopping to reflect on the fact that all those things (that walk with Xan, those two lines in that novel, that conversation with your sister, that moment in the garden) are really our life.

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