I’m just back from 2 1/2 weeks of vacation that was mostly off the grid. It only took me a couple of days to stop feeling weird because I was not checking or answering email, writing blog posts or organizing projects for my clients. The first few days I also felt like I should be reading something for work, or getting exercise, or blah, blah, blah.
Then I just relaxed and did what I wanted to in the moment–sleep, walk, eat, swim, look at the mountains, watch the rain, talk with Jeff and friends, travel into town to buy food, or nothing at all. After about a week I realized these are the true basics of my life, not my efforts of working hard and growing my business. Nor are my efforts to ensure that those I love are happy. My main question was, “What do I want?” or “What do I want to do?”
I realized that when I honor myself and love myself first, I have a lot more to give to others.
I also realized that those two questions are very different, and that I usually ask the second question about doing, when the first is more powerful. At times not doing anything is more meaningful than doing something. Just being.
We are “human beings” after all, not “human doings.”
Does this mean that working hard is not useful? Or that my work does not fulfill me? Not to me. It means that a break from doing and focusing on getting things done is healthy and powerful. I came back from my holiday with new ideas and vigor. And a peaceful focus that I did not have before. Plus a deeper love of my work.
I learned (again) that quiet time is valuable. I decided that I don’t have to wait for next summer to have more of it! Starting today I will let myself have more time to just be a human being.
How was your vacation? Did you relax a bit? What new practices did you come back with?
If you have a holiday coming up, will you do it differently than in the past? How so?