The most wonderful thing about Lockdown for me has been the ability to step away from absolutely everything in my life.
We closed the office down at the end of March, and brought files, office equipment and sundries home to run the business from the small front office. My computer became the sole office computer, and my role as receptionist faded to that of putting the post in the post box, dropping any cheques off at the bank and otherwise sitting in my living room with no ‘official’ work to do.
I don’t know how much time I expected to be able to have on my computer, but it turns out that having the Husband working from just after breakfast until 7 or 8pm, then serving a family meal, then watching TV or playing games or taking a walk… well, by the time life is done it’s 11pm or later, and telling the family that I *have to* write a post or find a way to share my life isn’t possible. My computer was not available. I wasn’t working. I just was.
And it turned out that was what I needed to do. I made friends with my house, found my garden again a source of joy, fiddled with the deep cleaning tasks I hadn’t done for a while, and enjoyed playing at life. I’m emerging from Lockdown a happier, more relaxed person and determined to keep that relaxation going.
Brene Brown, in The Gifts of Imperfection, links play to renewal. We need to take time off work in order to play to make our work run better. All work and no play kills a person in the end. She advises that we become intentional about cultivating sleep and play, and tells us that this will be ‘countercultural’. Being overworked, exhausted, busy is a badge of honour in this culture. We work to sustain our way of living, and that’s backwards. Our way of living should sustain us in work and play.
Work is play, play is working for yourself. We should, in a perfect world, be free to find our vocation and follow it. I loved teaching, while I was in schools, but the lure of writing and finally getting a book finished was too much. Working as an office manager was never on the cards when I was a child, but it’s given me a great base to find myself. It gives me space and time to write my blog, start my next book, admin the Hygge Nook. I’m glad to be back. I’m even happier that at the moment I’m back with no excess activities planned or available.
At the moment I’m playing at work during work time, and working at playing at home. The weather’s still good and the evenings are long enough to keep us relaxed, walking after our evening meal and lazily conversing together over the firepit. My attention span returned after a couple of month’s of fragmentation. I’m reading… a lot…. and fully intend to write a post on my top reads for this summer. Posts will be completed according to no timetable, no stress or pressure. My next book is formulating itself in my head. About living simply, living cosily, living well. I’m truly cultivating play and rest.
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