It seems that I have forgotten how to relax. I have somehow conditioned myself to not be comfortable just “chilling.” sitting back, doing nothing. When I try, I become anxious and antsy. My body rebels and tells me that I must do something, anything, time is “a-wastin,” get going. The all too precious time is a “blowin’ away in the wind,” to mash up the movie and the Bob Dylan classic.
I often try to enjoy espresso on the deck, sometimes while hanging out with family and friends, sometimes alone. But even that time becomes more of a race to the finish than a relaxing time of reflection and conversation. Slurping instead of sipping, clock watching instead of listening to friends, family, or even sounds of nature.
This new conditioning has become more than a nuisance, it has taken away one of the most important mental health tools people have, the ability to relax, clear one’s mind, then regroup and recharge.
I need to address this and soon. I do not know where the blame falls, probably on me, but the situation needs to be remedied. I have to re-train my brain and body that it is okay to do nothing at times, or just enjoy what I am doing in the moment, without planning the next activity or worrying about how much time I am spending on the current action or lack thereof.
Even as I write this, my mind starts chirping about me taking too long to type and review my post. My inner voice starts to run down the list of tasks that still need to be accomplished. It is like a movie or book that intentionally makes you uncomfortable, I am currently reading a Hard Case Crime novel by Ed McBain that sometimes has that effect on me. The heroin-addicted main character’s manic episodes push me to a place I do not favor. I toss out the description since I am not comfortable linking the book here. This is an educational blog, so…
The re-training will start soon, but not until after I have another cup of coffee, clear my head, and just sit for a few more minutes. After all, starting immediately in a rush only strengthens the bad habit I am trying to break.