This photo wasn’t taken that long ago but it feels like a different life right now.
There is so much beauty in this time and yet there is also so much pain. There’s so much self-sacrifice and yet there is so much self-interest. There’s so much newness and there is so much sameness. Floating around with all the polarity, I’ve been struggling to keep a balanced sense of being.
I am a creature of habit and find so much comfort in routine, order and organization. At least that’s the way I seek balance in my day to day life. Now that I have extra time in my day, I’m tempted to fill it all, with “constructive” or “productive” activities. But, living under that self-imposed pressure to constantly be “doing” is frustrating and unhealthy. I have to constantly remind myself to leave room for joy. If there’s one thing is pause is teaching me (aside from being eternally grateful) it’s to be less rigid and more playful.
Its served as a reminder that I can be productive and I can be lazy. I can drink green juice and gin gimlets. I can read a novel and scroll mindlessly through social media. I can run 10 miles and watch 5 episodes of Narcos. And neither one has to define me. Life doesn’t have to be all one way in order to be wonderful, in fact living between the two extremes is where the magic exists.
So, if you are feeling any guilt about not producing, or achieving, or creating right now. Stop and know that that the guilt you feel is just a residual film from the societal pressures we all live under (in typical circumstances). You don't have to improve yourself, or be productive, or try to jam-pack your day with activities to fill up every ounce of your new found free time. Let this time be a place where you give yourself the freedom to do things, simply because they bring you joy. No other reason, no other benefit, no other agenda.
When you look at life through that lens, do you see how light you feel? How airy? How inspired? Let that be the energy that carries and sustains you through all of this.
Its okay to have goals and aspirations, but if you don’t leave room for the things that you bring you joy, you will feel dead inside. Pure and simple. For those of us who aren’t working right now, this is especially important. Know that you are worthy, you are capable and just because you aren’t earning a paycheck right now, doesn’t mean you don’t have the right to enjoy your time and fill it with ways that light you up.
Have a glass of wine
Stay in bed an extra hour
Enjoy a two-hour bubble bath
Watch an extra episode
When life goes back to normal, you’ll be thankful that you had time to fully explore and immerse yourself if all of those wonderful “unproductive” habits that you don’t ever make room for.
Wishing you all of the best and remember to take care of yourself.