Photo by soukup, courtesy of Creative Commons licensing.

Today I did nothing.  And I feel great.

When I say “nothing”, I mean that I: slept until my body wanted to wake up; talked with Eric on Skype until his next appointment; did a little grocery shopping; wrote morning pages; deep-conditioned my hair; watched a movie; and thought about my next knitting project.  So yeah, I did things, but not on any sort of schedule and not with any sort of pressure to Get Things Done.  It was lovely.

Invariably, allowing myself this sort of day reaps great rewards.  I got the inspiration I’d been hoping for to start a creative project that’s been brewing.  I feel rested after a week of terrible sleep.  I got to connect with myself and with my beloved, more deeply than weekdays often allow.

In our do-a-holic culture, doing nothing still gets a bit of a bum rap even though it is so necessary.  Plants grow best in soil that has gone fallow (plowed but left unsown) for at least one season.  I believe that we do too, and I have to keep reminding myself of it when the impulse to “do” gets big.  Giving myself permission isn’t always easy, especially when my Perfectionist gets loud and indignant.  But once permission is granted, my entire being says aaaaaaahhhhh.

If you haven’t had a doing-nothing day in a while, I hope you give yourself permission to set it all down (it’ll still be there when you’re done) and take the time for yourself.

How easily do you practice the art of doing nothing?  What do you notice when you give yourself time to lie fallow?

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