Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Day Off

I took the day off today. You'd think as a retired person, I'd take every day off, but since I am a young, semi-retired person, I don't. Most days, I write, prep for and/or teach classes and pursue a second career. And right now, in the evenings, I go to rehearsal. Some days, I take care of errands and household to-dos, and every day, I make time to cultivate relationships so I'm not a lonely, young semi-retired person.

Today began with a coffee date, followed by errands, which quickly begat other errands which meant I didn't find myself back home again until almost mid-afternoon. And you know what? I needed that.

Sometimes, I forget to slow down. I put on my busy hat and my blinders and blunder through item after item on my to-do list. These kinds of days are typically productive - I like checking things off my to do list - so they can be fulfilling as well.

But all that work and focus requires energy, and one lesson I remember very well from the world of work is that one pressure cooker day after another is physically exhausting and mentally draining. If we don't take time to recharge, we run the risk of  poor performance in at least one area of our lives, and unfortunately, the area that usually suffers is health or personal growth.

So, although today turned into a "check items off the list" kind of day, I meandered through the list, one task leading naturally to another, instead of being driven by to-dos. Some might call me unfocused, and they wouldn't be totally wrong.

What would have been totally wrong, however, would be putting on my busy hat and blinders and wasting a perfect fall day chained to tasks and to-dos with no time to stop and smell the  roses - and the coffee. It's unfortunate that it took me until late afternoon to realize that by not doing anything in particular, I was really doing exactly what I needed.

But, hey. Better late than never.

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