THE DAY I DECIDED TO DO NOTHING
Sounds boring? And yet here you are, reading what I have to say, as you let curiosity get the better of you or probably the thought of doing nothing once in a way appeals to you too!
Let me clear the air, when I said do nothing, I did not mean sit around the house all day and ignore the husband, kids, job, etc. As tempting as that sounds, I tried it for 15 minutes, and can tell you that it won’t work. You’ll just get all worked up or bite your finger nails off wondering how the world will manage without you (it can, and it will, but we are not the ones to be convinced!). What I mean is don’t plan your schedule for the day, don’t pack in appointments, reminders and to-dos. Keep it open, flexible, go with the flow and just let it unfold.
It all started when my husband announced in advance of a public holiday “Let’s not waste a day off doing nothing.” I nodded in agreement. As a culture, we are taught to pack in as much into our lives and days and even if you are numb with exhaustion when a holiday comes up, we chalk out a nice full schedule. I am guilty of it too. On one of those much awaited holidays, we dragged the kids out of bed at the crack of dawn for a groggy-eyed stroll in Cubbon park, drove out to the farthest café to eat the much talked about masala dosa and on the way back, checked into the supermarket to shop for the week then dropped by to visit an ailing aunt, met friends for lunch which included grabbing dessert at the nearest ice-cream parlour. At 5 PM, we finally head home and I found myself secretly planning to call in sick at work the next day because, for some strange reason, I felt exhausted! The holiday was fabulously productive but it did not feel like a day off at all!
That is when I decided I wanted a day of doing absolutely nothing. I announced it to my husband on the eve of yet another holiday and he gave me a blank stare, obviously used to my periodic proclamations. He muttered something that sounded like “yes, fabulous idea” and went back to scrolling through this emails.
Now I’m sure you want to know how the day of doing nothing went on. It was absolutely blissful. I woke up feeling free and like I had the whole day to myself. We had nothing planned, but breakfast lead to a walk with the kids, as they entertained each other, my husband and I had a nice long chat (without being distracted by our phones), we got back home and found our cousins only just arriving with some delicious dessert. The husband got all enthusiastic and offered to cook a meal and while the kids were being pampered by our guests, I just sat back and did nothing. As I looked around to see the happy faces it occurred to me that there is a certain joy in letting go. I was relaxed, didn’t need to rush anywhere, didn’t feel pressured to make the best use time. It was liberating. I recommend that you try it too. As for me, ever since that fabulous day, one Sunday every month, my family and I “do nothing” and yet, together, we do so much!