When I was seven, I remember having a revelation of sorts that I couldn't begin to understand until I was in my twenties. It was early in the morning on a Saturday and I was laying in bed looking out through the window at the foot of my bed. The rest of the world was completely quiet and I think I became aware of my own conciousness and aware of time itself as a construct.
I'm not exactly sure what happened, but the combination of not having any responsibilities and not speaking, being spoken to, playing, or otherwise being occupied, may have lead me to accidentally slow down and become self-aware. For a brief moment, my life was a vibrant collage of possibilities assembled from nearly every future I could predict at the time. I used to joke to my friends that it was like a spontaneous, chemical-free, acid trip. Not that I know what an actual acid-trip is like.
I haven't been able to duplicate the feeling since then.
From a young age to well into adulthood, I've never truly been off. Even when I took the time to meditate and relax, something about work and life would pop into my head. When I was a kid, it was homework or a school project, and the idea of having time to contemplate existence seemed ludicrous. Even when camping in the woods, there's rarely a large stretch of time before I think about getting back to work when I return to civilization. Time keeps tracking me across every body of water I try to traverse.
Being away from my phone unless absolutely necessary has slowed me down a bit, but not quite off.
I've been increasingly wondering what life would be like while being "off". I think because I've been working since childhood, I don't really understand any state other than being on all the time anymore. I may not even be comfortable with the idea of being off since I'm one of those people who has to do something all the time. I think it's about time I got used to boredom. I can't actually find anything wrong about being bored.
Come to think of it, I can't find anything objectively wrong about merely existing for the moment, provided all my obligations for said moment are complete. Why would I need to "find something to do" if I'm already done for the day. As I get older, that sentiment of always being occupied seems more and more like a silly notion hammered into children and young adults to control them in structured enviornments.
I think for my next project, I'll try being bored more often.