Learning to stop.
Written by Laura Prather on June 17, 2014
As much as owning a boutique consumes me I am also thankful that, on a picture perfect Colorado summer day, I can pack up for a few hours and head to the pool.
My son is anxious to enjoy the summer and there is nothing I like more that taking a snooze poolside. So we picked up one of my son’s homeschool buddies and we headed out for a swim.
But I also packed up a bag of “work” to do and hauled it along with us. Why can’t I just leave work alone? I always feel obligated to constantly be thinking about work. If I don’t I feel like I’m being lazy or irresponsible.
As I shooed the boys off to the pool and settled in to my lounge chair I closed my eyes and thought, “forget this!”. I didn’t touch that bag of work but instead savored a few moments of quiet and relaxation.
I never realized how hard it would be to STOP working – even for a moment.
Growing up there was never a family gathering that didn’t also include a meeting of some sort between my father and grandfather regarding the family business. Often grandpa would also call “family meetings” in the middle of Thanksgiving or Christmas to talk shop among the adults. Even now as my grandfather approaches 90 he still pulls my dad aside to talk some sort of business. It’s like his identity or feelings of usefulness are wrapped in his ability to conduct business.
I see the family resemblance in myself. At least I see it and it has clearly intrigued me that most of us find our worth and identity in what we “do” instead of “who” we are. I feel wrong if I’m not always DOING something. Even though I decided not to do any work at the pool today I will confess that the whole time I’m thinking, “you really should get out your planner and get some work done”. It’s like I feel naked when I’m not frantically trying to get “caught up” on work.
You know….I’ve been trying for 5 years to get caught up and it’s clear that I will never achieve that goal.
Instead of getting addicted to my work and losing myself in the process I’ve decided to enjoy this summer – and all my days – as much as possible while still doing everything God puts in my path with excellence. I have no problem working really hard – I think it is what we should do, but I think we need to remember to have fun in the process. The trick is being able to STOP the work, especially in our minds, so we CAN enjoy the most important part of our lives.
Tell me, are you able to rest or do you also constantly think about work?
Work hard. Play hard. Pray Well. Live Well.