Thanks to the French time difference, I woke up this morning refreshed and alert, much earlier than I normally do at home (certainly on a Sunday morning!). While we were away I slept only a bit less than the children – with no TV to keep me up and pleasantly tired from skiing each day I enjoyed about 9 hours sleep a night. Whenever I come back from Europe I resolve to utilise the time difference to create a new early-to-bed habit. In the past this hasn’t lasted long. I know in part this is because Big J doesn’t get home from work until about 730 pm, but I think if I want to give this habit a chance to stick, I need to look at the bigger picture.
Right now I’m still basking in post-holiday glow. I feel light and free, almost floating around the house as I do the washing, make breakfast, cheerfully chat with the children. Piles of clutter don’t bother me because in this refreshed state of mind I am confident I will get to them. I have already sorted out C and J’s rooms and put away piles of washing and it’s not even 9 am. In this state of mind, I can be as happy tidying as sitting in My Room with a cup of tea, blogging. I am not making myself wrong for not doing things (admin, housework, creative projects with the children) and I am not squeezing the pleasure out of doing things I love by pressurising myself to “make the most of it”. If Big J is grumpy I find it easy to happily go inside myself for a while instead of getting drawn into the bad mood.
The million dollar question is, how do I hold onto this feeling of being light and free? I suspect the answer lies in rephrasing the question. Life is a process, emotions are dynamic. Trying to hold onto a feeling is like trying to repeatedly ski the same small patch of snow – you can’t experience the thrill of the ride unless you allow yourself to keep moving, and if you stay in the same spot too long you’ll mess up the snow anyway. In skiing, the trick is to stay relaxed – which allows you to pass easily over any rough patches of snow – and take as many short breaks as you need (but don’t stop for too long until you’ve done as much as you want for the day, or you lose momentum).
So here’s my experiment for myself over the next few days:
- Stay relaxed, in my body and my mind (notice when I’m not and take a moment to gently let go of any tension)
- Take plenty of short breaks whenever I feel the need. But not so long that I lose momentum or get stuck in a rut.
I’ll let you know how I get on!