Seventeen days and counting of wise isolation, and though I keep looking for the silver linings, I found myself feeling guilty that I wasn’t accomplishing more. How could I ‘waste’ this ‘extra time’? I’ve observed many of my esteemed Essentrics® colleagues figure out new technology to teach ‘live’ classes online, and others sew awesome masks by hand to help with this health crisis–while I judged myself for not doing enough, not contributing enough.
Instead of on continuing down that slippery slope, I knew it was time for a phone call with my trusted therapist, now offering phone calls and face time sessions. Karen helped me see this as the opportunity it is; perhaps one of those silver linings is getting a grip on my twisted relationship with time and productivity. A recovering workaholic and perfectionist of many years, I suspect that my perception of time is tied up in self worth. Or as Brene Brown says, “never good enough”. I’ve provided a link to her TED talk on vulnerability if she’s new to you.
Ironically, Karen’s “prescription” was just what I needed, a vacation from time. Five days ago, I covered up every clock in the house and trained myself to ignore the time on my phone, checking it far less often. My challenge is to not only let go of the clock, but also how much I accomplish–or don’t. Going through my days hour by hour, with a permission slip to sleep when I’m tired, eat when I’m hungry, do Essentrics workouts whenever I choose, read a book, watch a movie or–only when it sounds good–reorganize the spice cabinet. This little vacation from time has felt so healing, I’ve extended it and I don’t know for how long.
If others depend on you right now for meals and more, at least consider giving yourself an afternoon or evening off of scheduling. Better yet, divvy up the meal chores among family members who can handle that task, to give yourself a whole day or two off the clock.
This morning, on day five, it sounded good to meditate, write in my journal and now share some thoughts–after a walk in the woods with puppy Panda. Many of us have an excessive gift of time right now, but if we aren’t vigilant about living in the moment, many fears of the future can rob us of this gift. And living in future fears will weaken your immune response, possibly contributing to those fears. If you, like I, am bummed about a spring holiday no longer happening…think about a vacation from time. And let me know how you like it!