The first time I really started to think about myself and whether I was happy with my own life, I was on a two-week vacation at my family's home to take the driver's licence exam. My mother and sister were working, and most of the time, I just had nothing to do, except for my 8AM driving lessons. At first, I was bored. But after a week, I had started a life changing questioning path, and when I came home after two weeks, I was more rested than I had been in years.
This experience makes me believe that, as human beings, we need time off. Not only vacation from work, or travels - which are great too - but an actual break, physical and mental, from the everyday life we rush into without looking around.
Our Judeo-Christian culture's Sunday is a proof of that. Others may have a different day, or a different way of expressing it, but every traditional culture has some sort of time off, over the week, over the year. Quiet time to regain energy and prepare for the season to come, to stick our heads out of the everyday routine and free our minds to reflect upon ourselves and others.
But in today's society, I feel we are forgetting to take some quiet time off. I may be wrong, but I feel like we rush from work to home obligations, from week-ends out with friends to carefully prepared holidays, without actually giving ourselves the luxury to stop and just do nothing at all. Why is that? Is it uncomfortable to face ourselves and all the questions we refuse to ask? Have we simply forgotten how regenerating it can be?
Ever since that driver's licence summer, I have implemented the "quiet time" habit in my life, to face my own emotions and questions, reflect upon the past year's achievements and lessons, and think about my future projects and priorities. Each year, I take a week off work and leave town - not for a fancy travel but to a quiet place - and enjoy slow days of reading, writing, walking, exercising, or doing nothing - napping, whatever. No obligations, no schedule, just quiet time.
I have already approached the subject of meditation, which is, I think, a smaller everyday method to enjoy quiet time all year long, and I have decided to start implementing this habit in my daily life as well.
What about giving it a shot yourself? You don't have to get off the grid for two weeks, but what about trying not to plan anything for just one week-end, or even one day, and see what happens? Maybe you already have quiet time in your life, don't hesitate to share your own experience in the comment section!
Also, Anuschka invited me over to her blog Into Mind for a guest post in her Style Profile series, if you are interested in checking it out!