Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Running Away From the Circus

I enjoy time alone. I'll go as far as to admit I enjoy my own company. "Down time", as I refer to it is simply when I need to step out of the three ring circus of life. And, no, I do not stay in my room with the shades drawn, curled up in bed. No, no Nanette, I just do anything I want to. I have no schedule, no appointments, no itinerary. And no one to deal with. (Unless I choose to.)

There have been times when my week was so frantic or the black dog was at the door, and I felt as if I may miss the trapeze bar slinging toward me as I stood on the tall platform. It was time. I needed a mental health respite.

To me this is akin to changing my life from 24/7 CNN to a 90 minute movie on the Hallmark Channel. Yes, I know how it is going to end. Just hold your sneers or chide comments, suspending reality is good for everyone every once in a while.

If your schedule prevents you from declaring yourself removed from "life" for a day during the week, certainly a Saturday or Sunday is a possibility. When I worked, there were times when the clown car was getting very full and I would just take a day off (always trying to choose a slow day that would least effect everyone I worked with). I proclaimed it my mental health day.

Go to a spa, get your nails done, visit that gallery that you have wanted to see but it never suited everyone else. Get together with friends you never have time to see. Heck, if that kitchen cabinet has been stressing you out, take an hour to empty and reorganize it.* Whatever you choose will bring you peace, enjoyment, and rest.

Yes, this is selfish, but if you don't take care of yourself, who will? If it doesn't suit those around you and they suggest that perhaps you can do it later - There's your sign. You need a day to yourself.

If you spend your "down day" worrying about what you should be doing, how you are going to justify this, or feeling guilty, then maybe you should just ask yourself, "Am I 'fitting in' to someone else's life, or living my own? Am I always juggling my time, doing things for family and friends because they need it or is it because I feel I have to? 

Stop for a moment, take a deep breath, and try to clear your mind? Cannot do it? Feel exhausted? Take that deep breath. Do you feel better in the moment right after than you have in a while? 

If that did not work, perhaps the ringing phone, buzzing text notifications, (screaming children), traffic, and trying to plan supper after a hard day that is going to resume as soon as you open your eyes will convince you. 

Remember, as I said earlier: "Breathe normally. [ ] Although the bag does not inflate, oxygen is flowing to the mask. If you are [ ] with [ ] someone who requires assistance, secure your mask, and then assist the other person."

Of course don't forget it will always be show time tomorrow. Few of us have the luxury of running away for several days. In today's fast paced world, life is a circus. Just remember you do not want to fly without a net.


But do not do any housekeeping even when you feel overwhelmed by guilt. Just don't do it.

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