Red-Eye Flights and Eavesdropping

red eye

When I was younger, I used to be able to stay up all night with no problems. Not anymore. After a red-eye flight on Thursday night and then another on Saturday morning, I’m feeling my age today. I’m not the spring chicken I used to be.

Having not pulled an all-nighter since my early 20’s, I was actually looking forward to it on Friday night. I imagined drinking cup after cup of coffee through the wee hours of the morning.Β  Laughing, being slap happy and having fun, while waiting to catch our early morning flight. What’s better than that?

Sleep. Sleep is better. It’s been two days and I’m still recovering. How do teenagers do this?

On Thursday night’s flight, while eavesdropping on the conversation behind me, I got highly motivated. Listening in on others’ conversations is not something I would normally do, but this particular discussion got my attention. A man was talking with his seat neighbor about her goals in life. She mentioned having goals and dreams, but was afraid to seek after them because it would require changes in her life.

In response, he told her “Stop letting fear keep you from going after your dreams. You have to just jump in. There’s never going to be a right time. The time is now.”

I thought of the many dreams I have in life. Some are small, but they are dreams nonetheless. Others will require a lot of sacrifice. As the man behind me said, there’s never a right time. There will always be something in our way. An excuse to procrastinate, to stop us from going after our dreams. But how will we ever reach our goals, if we never take the first step?

Upon coming back home, I began making a list. A list of my goals and my dreams. I’ve realized that one thing that makes me discontent in life, is not accomplishing what I know I must accomplish. Often times, I criticize myself for not being good enough. The reason, is because I have not reached many of my goals, nor have I made much effort to do so.

Procrastination brings disappointment in oneself. Why live that way, when I can change it?Β  As the man said, “Stop letting fear keep you from going after your dreams.”

“A journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” – Lao Tzu

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29 Responses to Red-Eye Flights and Eavesdropping

  1. Dave says:

    I have only once pulled an “all-nighter.” I did it in my first semester of college, and afterwards made sure that my plans were sufficient to keep me from ever having to do it again.

    There have been a few times when I have only gotten an hour or two of sleep in a 48 hour span, but I will do things for my children that I will do for no one else. I’m sure you understand. πŸ™‚

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    • mewhoami says:

      College can certainly require long hours and late nights. It’s good that you began to plan accordingly. The red eye flights were an attempt to travel cheap, but I think I’d rather pay more and have the chance to sleep.

      I completely understand. The sacrifices we make for our children are just a part of the ‘job’. Plus, when it comes to them, what we do are not really sacrifices at all.

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  2. Doobster418 says:

    I can’t do the red-eye flights anymore. I need my sleep in order to function and I don’t sleep very well…if at all…on planes. I also don’t eavesdrop on other people’s conversations when I’m on a plane. The first thing I do once I get situated is put my earbuds in my ears to clearly send out a definitive message: “I’m listing to my music, so don’t interrupt me. I don’t know you and I don’t want to talk to engage in small talk with you. So just shut up and mind your own business.”

    Yeah, I know. Kind of antisocial, but I don’t want to hear the dreams and aspirations of the stranger sitting next to me or hear them complain about their jobs, the flight, their spouse, or their kids. And I most especially don’t want to see all of the pictures they’ve amassed on their smartphone or iPad. I just want to be left alone!

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    • mewhoami says:

      I wouldn’t normally eavesdrop, but this conversation immediately got my attention and I’m glad it did. But, I do understand you not wanting to be disturbed during a flight. It can get rather annoying if you’re disturbed by the wrong person.

      However, I’ve learned a lot from fellow passengers. My view, is that we can learn from anyone, at any time and in any situation. Therefore, if they have a bit of insight that can help me to be a better person or open my mind to differing opinions, then I’m willing to listen.

      Listening to people complain however, is completely different. That is something I would not want to be a part of on a flight either. In that case, I’d be wearing the headphones also.

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  3. So, true. Every time I debate making a big change, the doubt starts to seep in: maybe we should wait until we have more money saved, maybe we should wait until the housing market changes, maybe we should wait until we have more free time. And I just have to drill it into my head: there will never be a perfect time. Just do it.

    As an aside, it now takes me 2-3 days to recover from nights without sleep. I used to work nights in my twenties. Not anymore!

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    • mewhoami says:

      Exactly. Just do it. Nike had it right, all along. There is no better time than now. Plus, tomorrow may be too late.

      Working nights would be too difficult. I bet you’re glad you don’t do that anymore.

      Like

      • Yeah, at the time the hardest part wasn’t really staying up all night, it was acclimating back to a day time schedule on my days off. I spent a lot of time by myself watching reruns at 3 in the morning while everyone else slept.

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  4. DailyMusings says:

    All nighters are definitely for the young πŸ™‚ I lost one hour due to the “spring ahead” time change with the clocks and I still can’t catch up 2 days later!! I think you will accomplish and reach your goals because you seem determined and focused to do so. I have often felt the truth in John Lennon’s words.. “life is what happens when you’re making other plans”

    Like

    • mewhoami says:

      Oh yes, the spring ahead sure doesn’t help matters. I sure hope so. There’s only one way to find out, and that’s to start. That’s some good words by Lennon. Thanks for sharing that.

      Like

  5. stormy1812 says:

    Truer words have not been spoken regarding taking that first step (and about all nighters lol). I know I’ve certainly had my issues with fear and hesitation. I think I’ve finally hit that true crossroads though of where it’s decision making time and I just have to jump. I don’t have time, so to speak, to waste anymore. Life needs to be lived, not just survived or getting by. πŸ™‚

    Like

    • mewhoami says:

      Well said. Life is too short to wait. What we want/need to do, must be done now. I agree, life needs to be lived to it’s fullest. Thank you for this motivating comment.

      Like

  6. TK says:

    Very true. I think like this too. My problem is that I try and find a way to accomplish all my dreams in one shot. I’m still working on that whole prioritizing thing.

    Like

    • mewhoami says:

      That sounds a bit overwhelming, TK. Some people are great at multi-tasking and are able to succeed that way. If that’s you, then that’s great. I for one, must prioritize or else nothing would get completed.

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  7. I love when snippets and overheard conversations make such a difference… it’s like you were meant to hear it!

    Like

    • mewhoami says:

      Yes! I agree. It may not be courteous to eavesdrop, but if it helps us in some way, I don’t see any harm in it. I’m grateful that I as able to listen in and that he shared what he did.

      Like

  8. suzjones says:

    The only thing stopping you is fear of so many things. You know you can do it. You are infinite potential πŸ™‚

    Like

  9. Jenna Dee says:

    If you have a goal in mind then find a way to make it happen. I know you can do it if you want to. Love Jenna πŸ™‚

    Like

  10. April says:

    I’m wondering if my procrastination is really fear in disguise. Nah, I WANT change, and I’m not afraid to do anything to achieve it. The only weird thing I have discovered, maybe I’m fearful of becoming successful. Leaving our comfort zones can be daunting, can’t they? That was a good conversation to be hearing. Better than someone chatting about the perfect color of nail polish, where to buy the best shoes…blah, blah. Snore.

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    • mewhoami says:

      Are you fearful of becoming successful, because you fear the potential failures that could occur during such success? That was a weird sentence structure, so hopefully that made sense. I struggle to leave my comfort zone also, but it’s something that’s necessary at times.

      Yes, much better! I do not want to hear about nail polish or fashion. I can barely dress myself as it is. I have no sense of fashion whatsoever. Just wear black. Everything goes with black, right?

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      • April says:

        I swear my brain seems so irrational to me. If one of my kids were trying to decide to stretch themselves into unfamiliar territory, I would encourage them. I have a mom speech about failures becoming lessons. If one path does work, take another. So, why don’t I listen to myself? Heck if I know. Every time I tell my therapist that I can’t do something, she has a certain look she gives me and asks “what’s the worst that could happen”? Then watches me squirm to come up with an answer.

        I’m also one of those people who like to blend in, not stand out. As weird as it sounds, if I became good at something, I feel it would draw attention to myself.

        The life of an oxy-maroon.

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        • mewhoami says:

          I must by an oxy-maroon too. I second just about everything you just said. And in regard to attention – I stay as far away from attention getting situations as possible. Except here of course. πŸ™‚ But, no one knows me so the attention stays here.

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  11. This is something I don’t think I can hear often enough! It’s good for the soul to always work to improve and have a goal in mind. Great post!

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