Thursday, January 15, 2009

Resting--A New Nesting Tradition

Now that I work from home, days on and days off kind of blur together in a way they never used to when I worked in a cubicle.  So when I decided last fall to designate one day off every week and really try not to do anything, I didn't know what kind of challenge I was getting myself into.

Taking time off, I'm sure you know, is no easy feat for modern women such as ourselves.  I, for instance, am always tempted to keep my email on during my day off.  And it always manages to lure me back into work-related tasks (damn that little audible "ping" of new messages!).  Or, when I'm sitting on my sofa trying to reflect on the previous week in my journal, I'll somehow end up writing, as if on autopilot, about next week's to-do lists and upcoming projects and appointment reminders.  It must be some sort of sickness.

To remedy my malady, I've been experimenting lately with a "system," so to say, for turning off.  To start, one of the first things I've learned is that a dirty house and an empty fridge are my leisure busters.  If you work full time with weekends off, you know exactly what I mean.  You come home on Friday hoping to have a couple days off only to find a list of chores (clean the bathroom, Cinderella; wash the sheets, Cinderella) mercilessly waiting for you.  Thus, in order to actually accomplish a day off (Saturdays are my choice), I have to get a head start.

Now, I haven't actually accomplished this utopian goal of having fresh sheets, dinner on the stove, a clean house, and flowers and dessert on the table (just for fun--I'm an overachiever) all by Friday night before the sun sets, but I'm getting better at getting there.  For instance, I've learned that if I wait until Friday to clean and cook and do laundry, I'm hosed.  So I've started cleaning earlier in the week to see how far I can get.  And I try to hit the grocery store early so we don't run out of staples (what?!  coffee and No cream!?) by Saturday.  And I have to shut off my computer by Friday night (drastic, I know, but I'm a junkie), and stash my to-do lists in out of sight places lest I be tempted by emails and notes.

I bring all of this up because part of nesting is resting (ah...clever rhyme).  No home is peaceful (one of the best qualities achieved by nesting) when we don't make time for the peace.  So please, do yourself a favor this week, and tackle a few things today that you normally save for the weekend.  Then promise yourself that you aren't going to fill that freed up precious weekend time for something else.  I, for one, will be tackling the toilets this afternoon.  I mean, the cleaner the toilets, the better the rest, you know?

note: yes, that is my dog.  He is quite possibly one of the most pathetic dogs in the world.  Makes very sad faces and is totally unappreciative of the life of leisure he lives....

Stick around later today for my much belated Marketplace Maven post when I review a great maven resource (aka fabulous career book).  And definitely come back tomorrow for my first ever free giveaway raffle!

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