Last weekend was my first non-working one in three weeks. Although I made sure I have more than six hours of sleep every night, I fell ill last week – with flu and fever. Staying in bed was no an option so I took some medicine and stocked up on tissues and forged ahead.
Although I was feeling much better last weekend, I wasn’t really up for doing much. I wasn’t mentally and physically exhausted but I wasn’t motivated either.
So I threw cautions to the wind and did nothing for 48 hours.
Well, when I say nothing, I mean nothing work related.
I stayed at home as my husband was away on business. I helped in the kitchen on Saturday, watched an old film on television with the family -– just basically spending time with them.
On Sunday, my fever returned for a bit and I whiled away my time watching a reality tv programme featuring members of SHINee, a Korean pop group, on YouTube and learning one of their old hit songs in Japanese (because the pronunciation is much simpler than Korean). I also put away the laundry and cleared up the living area of my room.
Doing absolutely nothing (work related) -– on a weekend, mind you – is absolutely difficult for me. It consumes me with guilt.
I always have this idea that spending a few hours on work in the weekend will help me strike off more items on my to-do list quickly.
But focusing on work on a weekend doesn’t give me “peace of mind” either. I would also have a nagging feeling that I shouldn’t have to work on my days off.
I try to complete my tasks during the work week but it’s not always possible. There will always be new deadlines, phone calls, interruptions, meetings, training etc
It’s tempting for me to work on the weekends because there are less distractions. More often than not, I do get a lot done.
But there is a danger in this too. For one thing, your mind never gets a break from work which will lead to burn out, no matter how much rest/sleep you get.
It’s tough to be creative – and a lot of jobs require creativity – when you’re constantly “producing”. When you don’t let your mind have a proper break, you will no doubt produce results but they might start to look the same.
When you’re constantly “producing” seven days a week, your product will be as creative as something churned out of a production line.
I felt better about “wasting away” my weekend after reading this post titled The power of doing absolutely nothing.
Although I feel a little guilty for indulging in 48 hours of “me” time, I would be lying if I said it didn’t feel good. Frankly, I feel refreshed, inspired, brand new. I’m not completely well physically – I’m still coughing from the flu and fever earlier last week – but I feel mentally clear.
The fact that I’m blogging again after MONTHS(!) means I’m inspired to go back to doing things that I love doing but “felt like a waste of time”.
I’m glad the last 48 hours of “doing nothing” has allowed me to reconnect with my true self.
I might not have another full 48 hours to spend “doing nothing” in the future but I will remember to “lose myself in the moment” more without feeling guilty of the endless to-do list.
Try it! Who knows, you might rediscover yourself again.