Relatives from Seattle were in town last night and I did the unthinkable -
I turned off my cellphone for several hours.
Sure, it was a bold move. I intentionally unplugged from my busy day. But since our daughter was sitting next to me at the dinner table, I knew nothing too important would be missed.
What a joy! Taking the time to fully enjoy conversation, food and people!
An article in the New York Times asks the question,
Is Busyness Jeopardizing Our Souls?
The articles points out that most of us answer the question, "How are You?" with the response, "I'm busy!" or "Just soooo busy!" and the truth is, many of us actually are very busy. Our lives are filled with work, raising children, maintaining our homes and meeting with clients who also have demanding schedules. In this amped up environment, it feels like chatting with a neighbor or clerk at a grocery store-just takes up too much of our precious time.
At the Home Depot this morning, I made a point of smiling and talking to the clerk at the cash register. He seemed slightly surprised but happy to be acknowledged. I did this, in part, to intentionally slow down. I have been leaning in and, rushing to finish my To-Do list. But why? It's not like I'm late for a meeting or appointment. No, I am just in the hurrying habit.
Back to dinner last night, the restaurant was fantastic! Osteria Morini is a rustic Italian waterfront restaurant and bar. My meal, Rigatoni with wild braised mushrooms, rosemary olive oil and parmigiano was heavenly. The conversation was perfect too-politics, family and summer vacation plans.
My point is, I pulled myself out of the busyness trap.
Sometimes, especially when you love what you do for a living, it's hard to stop being busy.
In fact, busyness is today's mantra. If you know what I mean and want to jump off the busy train, give these suggestions a try.
- Meditation retreats - can recharge your emotional batteries.If you've never gone, start with a few hours or a day long retreat. The Insight Meditation Community of Washington DC offers daylong and weekend retreats. Retreats are held in and around the Baltimore/D.C. area. Consider visiting the Hermitage at the Franciscan Monestary in N.E. Washington. The Hermitage is a single living space available to rent for 1 - 7 days.
- Outdoor Walks or Hikes - will do your mind and body good especially if you leave your cellphone off or at home! Last week, I was walking in the woods at Brookside Gardens, a local park near my home. A hiker behind was laughing so loud, I thought he was crazy! When I looked closer, I saw he was plugged into his cellphone and just chatting to someone-what a relief!
- Social Dancing - used to be a common way to socialize back in the day. It's more challenging today to find places where you can just dance-no alcohol and no hassles! Glen Echo Park in Glen Echo Maryland has social dancing at the Spanish Ballroom.
Remember- Busyness Does Not Equal Success
Enjoy family, good food, conversation & love-it's all that really matters