There are no naturally occuring plants which bloom 100% of the time. All of life is about saving up energy, then expending it, then saving it up once more. From our diurnal cycles of sleep and wakefulness to the annual seasons everywhere you look there are times to do things and times to stop doing them.
Of this I need daily reminders!
Well, among other things I’ve been whinging a little bit lately about the adjustment to living in one place after our recent itinerant lifestyle as RV’ers. I have to give myself the chance to adjust to change. I’m not very good at giving myself a chance. I tend not to listen to doctors when they tell me to take it easy. I tend not to listen to my wife when she repeats the same advice. I’ll admit I never had a problem taking my vacation time off from work but that was always because I had twice as much lined up in my head for the time allotted away from work. I even vacated hard. (is that a real word for this context? to vacate… Hmmmm…)
But the reality of life is that no one should expect to be productive, or to bloom, or to excell, or … anything for that matter… ALL THE TIME. Our bodies and our minds need times to rest and re-invigorate themselves.
I’m aware that many people in today’s work-a-day world are afraid to take vacations. They are afraid that if they are gone the boss will realize he doesn’t need them. And if that’s the case I truly feel for them. If that’s the setting where you’re working — if you’re still working — it might be a good idea to look for some place else because I can assure you, should you die, your job opening will be posted before your obituary hits the newspapers. A job, is a job, is a job: it is not your life.
Seriously though… the reasons companies GIVE vacation time is because they realize that employees need time to unwind. After a lifetime of work I proved time and time again that being away from work for a few days, or even for a week, isn’t enough time to really relax. In the same way that we built UP tensions, it takes time for our bodies to release them. The sprained ankle that seems to minor takes such a long time to heal for just those reasons… those muscles and all that connective tissue that got stretched will go back to their normal state but they need time — and our brain, and our long-time-stressed emotions are just the same. It may seem that we are relaxed after a day or two, but you’re only feeling the surface and not the inner you.
People like me talk about everything. So that means I also talk about relaxing. Some people may say I make a job out of it. But we’re all different. Relaxation is generally doing something you don’t usually do. For the sedentary relaxation could be jet-skiing while for the active relaxation could be reading a book. Whatever works for you.
In our case I’m getting caught up on all the things I’ve missed during our RV life. Yeah… I’m still upset with myself that I’m not being productive — but I’m also not going out and starting new projects or lining up new volunteer gigs. I talk about it, but I don’t stop the downtime, I don’t interrupt the important work of recharging.
Next time you reach a turning point. Think about allowing some time for your brain to catch up with the new you. Something has changed. Give your self some time to figure out what that means to you.