I’m more productive when I’m busy. I work well with deadlines and tight timelines and quick turnarounds. Too much idle time gives my Type-A mind time to feel bored, ineffective, and squirmy. I work best with goals and to-do lists. And yet….
I need downtime. Every day. Even if it’s five minutes with my book in a quiet room or ten minutes on my yoga mat. I need time for reflection and introspection and time to just “be.” The introverted side of me craves this.
As a parent, I’m trying to identify these types of needs in my children early on, so that I can help them find ways to manage their emotions, their coping skills, their lives. I already see that my eight-year-old son also needs daily decompression time, and I protect that time for him fiercely; he’s the best version of himself when he’s had time to regroup and recalibrate. My five-year-old daughter seems to be able to roll with the punches a bit more, similar to my husband, and go with the flow, even if the flow is really busy.
This past weekend was a crazy one for us. Over-scheduled and over-booked, Saturday was a day of running from one place to the next. But Sunday was the opposite- it was one of those days at home that I love so much- puttering around the yard, playing in the backyard, tidying the house. Just “being.”
I’ve written about things like this before, so I’ll re-post a little bit of what I’ve already shared with you, in the hopes that you’ll relate to a part of my message:
“Lately I’ve been talking to my children about “who they are.” We’ve been chatting about things they like, things they don’t, things that are/aren’t important to them, and their hopes and dreams. I’ve been trying to give them the verbiage of introspection, to open up their childhood minds to the language of what characterizes them, and makes them proud to be unique and special. To be themselves, whomever those selves may be.
For now, my job is to give them opportunities to learn. I see each exposure to something new as a chance for personal growth. That’s why we spend our Summers traipsing around Southern Ontario and our Winters at every event within an hour’s drive. We go to see monster trucks and rodeos and conservation areas and waterfalls and baseball games and theatres and ceramic studios and Teen Tour Band concerts and beaches and outdoor rinks. We show them the world and try to help them figure out their role in this wonderful community of life.
I posted this on my Facebook Page a few days ago: “I really think a happy life is about balancing all of your favourite things. Lower the stressors you have control over and prioritize the things that you love.” And how are they to know the things that they love if I don’t give them the tools to discover that?
“Happiness results from the possession or attainment of what one considers good.”
And it seems to me that if you figure out your good, you will figure out your happy.”
The Game of Life rolls on…