22nd May 2020

Culture / Featured / India Price

India Price is Right: The Unexpected Joy of Being Unproductive

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This week’s column is opinionated and I’m sorry if you disagree. But what’s a world without strong opinions?

I hope that, as lockdown goes on, we all start to be slightly more forgiving of the off days – and even start telling people about them.

India Price

I don’t know about you, but I’m sick of watching other people wax lyrical about their achievements. Normally, I’m all for a morale boost, for lifting people up, for singing from the rooftops about what we’ve achieved and celebrating those achievements, no matter how small or large. But right now, I’m bored of social media bragging. Don’t get me wrong, I love to be productive. There’s nothing better than a day where everything gets ticked off your to-do, where you feel a surge of pride for the productive 12 hours you’ve just had. And while a part of me is pleased that people aren’t just sitting on their sofas for 24 hours, eating their body weight in whatever they can set their sights on, there’s something that really gets under my skin about posts that are purely there to make other people feel bad. Normally, I’m productive. I’m good at putting away my phone and smashing through my to-do list. Of course, I have off days. The last two weeks, I’ve been unspeakably distracted; browsing the internet for clothes I really don’t need, whiling away hours on Instagram and yes, I’m sorry to admit it, but getting right to the bottom of the side bar of shame on the Daily Mail. And no, I don’t always feel good about it – especially when I’m not on furlough and I’m not any less busy.

But do you know what makes me feel even worse about myself? Seeing people take to social media to tell their followers that they’ve ticked off their day’s worth of achievements: the loaf they’ve baked, the clothes they’ve died should be dyed, the wardrobes they’ve sorted, the language they’ve learnt, the kilometres they’ve walked. I’m worried that, just as we started to make progress by dampening down the general toxicity of social media, that we’re going back to a place we were a year or so ago. Bragging, boasting, making others feel bad. It’s funny, isn’t it, how even in 2020, people are worried to share that they aren’t feeling productive, that they are having an off day, that they’re actually feeling a bit shit today. Maybe it’s my own insecurity but I hope that, as lockdown goes on, we all start to be slightly more forgiving of the off days – and even start telling people about them.

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India Price, eldest daughter of Charlie and Caroline Gladstone, is a freelance editor, writer and digital strategist, specialising in fashion and lifestyle. Her clients include The Gloss, ASOS, John Lewis & Partners, Sir Plus, Next, Hackett and more. She is also an Associate Lecturer at London College of Fashion, tutoring 2nd and 3rd year students across various units in BA (hons) Fashion Journalism.

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