By Robin Smyth
Sometimes, it’s easy to forget to treat ourselves to some quality quiet time. From the moment we wake up to a blaring alarm, our days tend to be jammed with work, family and appointments. Add to these mandatory obligations, such as access to media around the clock, and it can be difficult to break away from a hectic pace.
Many of us feel obligated to fill our days with tasks and errands from start to finish. Even in our downtime, social media apps are open, videos are playing or music is blaring in the background. The constant busyness and attention to media is stealing away from the vital restorative activity of doing nothing.
While it may sound odd to accept the fact that taking breaks from our lives to recharge is necessary, why not try it for a day or two before forming an opinion?
Most of us will likely be visited by a pressing sense of guilt or uselessness at sitting quietly with no distraction. We have been programmed to believe idleness is not a desirable trait and that we have to be constantly achieving something to be worthy of existing.
Try to make a conscious decision to find some quiet in your life. It’s really rather magical once you find your groove. Meditation is an obvious example of stilling oneself and quieting the mind. If meditating is not your thing, there could be some options that will work better for you.
If you have a companion animal, try having a cozy snuggle with your fur baby. Close your eyes and match your breath to your pet’s and just relax into a few blissful minutes of pure love.
Finding a sunbeam and curling up in it is another intensely rewarding way to unwind. Whether indoors or out, sunbathing is an ultra-relaxing pass time. Allowing the warmth of the sun to envelop you in its warmth while you do absolutely nothing at all is an amazing feel-good break.
A highly favoured quiet time you may not be taking full advantage of is a hot and steamy bubble bath. With candles. No music, no book, door closed. Wine is optional! Lean back, relax and focus on breathing. Ignore your mind’s attempts to generate grocery lists or problem solve. Simply make you your priority, at least until the water turns tepid.
Taking “me” breaks is the least unselfish thing you can do for yourself. It takes almost no time out of your day and can be a well-deserved, therapeutic experience. Try scheduling some downtime into your day; you just might like it enough to make it a recurring event.
Robin Smyth has contributed to newsletters, business publications, inter-company webpages and blog sites. She has reported on multiple genres engaging a variety of styles and is known for her one draft, no edits style of writing. Follow her on Twitter @RobinDS3.