Business Magazine

Take One Day Off Just For Yourself

By Shrinkingthecamel

Take One Day Off Just For YourselfI don’t know if it’s because I am getting older, but the days just seem to slip away before my eyes.

I am trying to practice all the things that the experts say to slow it down, like being present in the now, getting up an hour earlier, taking a few minutes every day for quiet meditation, and fully appreciating everything around me.

But still, the days rush away as I am caught up in the swirl of work, home responsibilities, events, obligations, and more or less taking care of everything that needs to get done. And to be honest, when I do find a few minutes at the end of the day, I’m tired.

It’s the tyranny of what’s next.

Maybe I’ve gotten too distractible, or hyper-responsible. Time is so precious, yet I am constantly chasing it like some elusive rare bird that I am trying to catch and put in a cage for safe keeping. There are things that I long for, but hardly ever find the time and mental space to do. Like writing more, reflecting, thinking big thoughts, and reading Harvard Business Review. I’ve got the past six issues piled up in my office, among a stack of other books, and it’s starting to scare me. And sometimes I complain to myself, “Wouldn’t it be great if I could just have an open-ended chunk of time to sit at Starbucks and just read, or think, or write poetry, like all those other slugs and unemployed people I see there all the time?”

I imagine what that could be like: No interruptions. No deadlines. No pressure to get to the next meeting in an hour.

It sounds so incredibly selfish.

The thing is, unless we carve out time to refresh and renew our souls, we will not be able to offer that best part of ourselves to others. Even Jesus escaped once in a while to the mountains and forests to get away from the clammy crowds so he could read the newspaper in peace, or whatever.

Time is the greatest gift, I realize, and no one can give that to me but myself. So next year, I am planning to take one day – at least one day – of vacation time and give it to myself, to do whatever the heck I feel like doing. I will plan the perfect day.

And here’s my special gift for you this Christmas: I am giving you permission to take a day off, too, just for yourself. You can start to plan your perfect day:

  • Drive to the mountains and take a hike
  • Write a letter to yourself
  • Sleep in
  • Be off the hook
  • Catch up on some reading
  • Imagine your future. It’s going to be great.

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