We are currently in the middle of our long school holiday here in Auckland. I am feeling super relaxed, have been sleeping better than I have in years and feel as though the holidays have stretched on forever and I want to share the reason why. Normally by now, my days would have been filled with chauffeuring the girls to holiday gym training and other activities but as they are taking a break from gym for a while, each day begins with no plans at all and it has been just wonderful.
When I was a little girl, some of my best ideas came to me when I was bored. When I had played with all of my toys and couldn’t think of anything else to do, I would lie on my back with my feet in the air and imagine what it would be like if everything turned upside down and I was walking on the ceiling. I would think deeply and creatively and learned to embrace boredom.
Normally I plan a whole heap of activities and places to go to keep the girls entertained in the school holidays but after a busy and often stressful year, my aim for this summer was to give my children and myself the gift of boredom.I have deliberately kept our schedule clear and as a result, our girls have spent hours just hanging out together on the trampoline, colouring in their books and making things out of nothing.
Instead of going to the movies, we have re watched films from our collection and they have grown to love films that I loved when I was a child. Last week we spent ages looking in the rock pools at the local beach that we have rarely visited because of our schedule. They have spent ages just lying around doing not much at all. They are happy and refreshed and so am I.
Usually I make to- do lists on a daily basis. I set myself mini goals to work towards and love to check them off, even in the holidays but this time, I have purposely let myself get bored and do nothing. Most days I have spent time just lying on my comfy old blanket in the lounge which is my favourite place to be. Sometimes I have drifted off to sleep but usually I have just spent time enjoying the peace and quiet and relishing the feeling of having no place to go and no need to do anything but just lie down.
I always try to make gratitude part of each day but having such quiet days has helped me see how blessed we really are. Time is so precious and doing nothing has helped stretch each day and make it seem even longer. We have a kingfisher that seems to visit our garden every day but I didn’t realise until I spent lots of time just sitting and looking at the garden. Life is full of treasures that are easily missed in the hustle and bustle of everyday life and this break from the busyness has reminded me of that.
I love to be busy and in fact my theme for the year is to ‘do everything at once’ an idea I picked up from my favourite Podcast – Happier with Gretchen Rubin. However, there is something luxurious and wonderful about simply doing nothing for a while, having a break from normal life and embracing boredom and I want to encourage you to try it too. Have a quiet day or weekend and spend time with yourself instead of automatically reaching for your phone or switching on your TV. Find a comfy spot and just do nothing in particular. Aspire to be able to say you have been nowhere and accomplished very little when asked what you have been doing! Let yourself be bored and enjoy it! Notice what is around you, let yourself think and just Be.