Tuesday, April 12, 2016

The joy of doing nothing

My To Do list is always at least 10 items long. Some of the items are short term ("make a grocery list") and some are more long term ("pay off two student loans by the end of the year"). No matter how many times I cross something off there is always another duty, choice, or goal to replace it. Isn't that what we are told life is? One endless to-do list. Being busy is the goal and doing nothing is a deadly sin (sloth anyone?).

Every. Single. Day. Work, look busy, strive for more, don't just sit there, achieve, earn, move, faster, more, sleep when you're dead. We are supposed to do that every day of our lives until we retire and we are too old, tired and sick to do all of the things that we thought we wanted to do.

Here's a thought. Why do I always have to be doing? Why do I always have to have my day planned from sunrise to sunset? Why can't I do nothing? I tried it once. Doing nothing. The guilt I felt was palpable. Wasn't there something better that I could be doing? Why was I just wasting a day when I "should" be being productive with my time. Instead of actually getting the sleep that I need I should be out finding another job to pay off my debt. Instead of joyfully receiving the affection of a very handsome man, I should be writing my next great novel. I am sure that I could squeeze in 30 minutes of working out, while cooking dinner, helping my son with his homework, reading another great book, watching a movie, and curing cancer. Isn't being a multitasker a good thing?

When do we get to just enjoy time as it is now? When do we get to just enjoy being in the present? When do we get to live how children live in such a current state a bliss that they don't even have time to think about trivial things like eating.

I was sold the idea that we should always be doing something and when I am not I feel guilty. So much so that I have to remind myself of the productive things that I did that day so it wasn't a complete waste of time ("At least I shot and published a video").

I plan to send more time enjoying doing nothing. I want to spend more time being in the present and living some of my time less structured.  I want to be so blissfully happy that I want to forget to eat and then come home and take a nap.

Do you ever feel the joy of doing nothing?


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