Clear a bit of room, physical and mental, and see what flows in. After all, if you can’t take a bit of time out once you’ve hit 60, then when will you ever, this side of the grave?
Choose a day when you can be alone, plan nothing, and let the events of that day unfold.
I tried it on a showery Friday. At first, it was pleasant. Waking luxuriously, without any alarms. Turning off laptop and phone – Take that! We’ll have no more from you for a while.
A gentle meditation. A slow breakfast of oats, coconut milk and fresh raspberries, savouring the mix of texture and flavour.
A walk around the garden in a light rain, something which I would never usually do, preferring to glance at the garden through a window rather than get up close.
Looking back, this was the highlight. Seeing the plants up close, touching cool leaves, soft petals, catching wafts of sweetness from the rambling roses, seeing the glisten of raindrops on leaves and watching tiny insects scurrying about their business.
Without expecting it I dropped into the zone, only noticing where I’d been as I stepped back into the house. What a restful and restorative place the zone is, and available right there, any time. That was worth learning.
And so the morning continued. Picking and arranging a few flowers. Communing with the cat. Quietly tidying and cleaning the bedroom. Experiencing the zen of polishing. At this rate I could become a domestic goddess without even trying.
But then, like water seeping out from beneath a leaking washing machine, desire started to creep into awareness. I’d just like to send my daughter a photo of the polished wood…ring that friend I’m thinking about…go to John Lewis and look for some shoes to wear to a wedding…
As the weather brightened, so did the mood, from inward-looking and contemplative to ‘ooh, let’s go out!’ At 2pm I declared the spacious day done and went out, though the phone stayed off until evening.
The feelings, though – they’ve lingered. The sense of having infinite time, the stepping away from the ‘to-do’s’ into the ‘to be’s’, those were refreshing and brought a sense of possibility and calm. And oddly, since taking that time out, I seem to have found a bit more time, to work on projects that were stuck.
Try it. Even for an hour. Simply sit, or walk. Breathe. Notice. See what happens. Let us know!