I am sure I am not alone in saying that last week was busy. Busy is one of those lovely words we seem to enjoy throwing into conversation because it makes us sound like we’ve got it sorted. The busy people get on with living abundantly whilst those on the sidelines watch enviously as the whirling dervishes fly past. Or so the whirling dervish might believe.
Everything today is about pace and speed. No need to queue for a real person to serve you in a shop now when you can use a “self-service” checkout that gets you out of there in half the time. Work-places stay open all hours and expect to be able to reach you on the iPhone/Blackberry/etc any time of the day or night. Family and friends use Facebook, texting, email and calls to mobiles in the expectation of immediate responses. Long calls must be booked in advance to save wasting time on answer machines. Letter writing is all but defunct – why waste time sending letters and waiting on replies when an instant connection is available?
In a bid to maintain some sense of work/life balance we try to become Superheroes by taking on too many projects or commitments outside of work. Our super-efficient lifestyles scream out: “Look at my fantastically full life!” Is it a full life that you really want though or do you want to be living your life to the full?
I took a day off work on Monday – the first time for ages I had time to do whatever I pleased. There were lots of things I could have done. All were worthy options. I realised I had a choice to make. I could fill up every single minute or I could let the day unfold. It wasn’t easy. I am a “doer”, a Martha not a Mary. Listing more tasks than I can achieve before chasing minutes to complete them is what I do. But choose I did.
I read a book recommended for extremely light brain-work (yes, it was classic chick-lit, I am not ashamed). I spent a wonderful couple of hours having lunch in a lovely country restaurant with my Grandma – time I will never regret spending with her. I walked my crazy little dog twice in the open fields and laughed at her antics in a way I never do when I’m squeezing the walks into an intense schedule. I did a couple of small household jobs that took very little time but made me feel so much better. I curled up on the kitchen work-top to read a magazine. I even had time to do some prep for “Joseph” (ruthlessly restricting myself to one musical number) before finishing off with a relaxing evening eating some of my many favourite foods (sorry, no prawn sandwiches in sight).
I’d lived one day creating wonderful memories. My schedule might not have been full but it gave me time to enjoy the spaces along the way. I became a little bit more myself.
The journey of life may be short or long but I want to live mine to the full while I’m here. What about you?
[Photograph by Cecelia – http://www.freedigitalphotos.net/images/view_photog.php?photogid=200 ]