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Day 194: Work Resistance

“Time you enjoy wasting, was not wasted.” ~John Lennon

I think I need a vacation. Lately I can barely get myself to work; I would rather exercise, be lost in a novel, lie in the grass feeling the warm sun and light breeze. Once I get in the door, the resistance sits at the door, waiting for a good reason to do something else. On these summer days, when the office is too hot to think, there are nothing but good reasons to take a break.

This is a true measure of positivity, the ability to let yourself take a break. In fact Thoreau once wrote that, “A man is rich in proportion to the number of things he can afford to let alone.” I long to get my hands off a zillion messes that each day we take small steps towards resolving. Most of what works in life is a result of how much patience and staying power you have. I know this, and ironically it is the thought that often keeps me from stopping.

I have given up the idea of shortcuts. I am pretty sure that there is no such thing as an overnight success, except maybe Justin Bieber. I know that holding a vision of where you are going is only the beginning of a dream. The rest of the way there is just taking the next step of millions of tiny steps in getting the work done. Sometimes the weight of the work in my mind, the not knowing how to make something happen, the knowing too well the risk involved in trying is where the doing becomes inaccessible. The work is just a weight.

Robert Louis Stevenson wisely advised: “Don’t judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” This is the vacation mindset at work or anywhere in life that you recognize the path is long and arduous, and that success is mostly about staying on the path. When I get into a groove with my work, I am not focused on results. I am happiest when I have no need to measure the worth of the day by any other barometer than it was a pleasure, a wonder or at least intriguing.

If I am going to waste time, I want it to be leisurely and satisfying so it feeds something inside. I don’t want to waste time resisting what is in front of me. If I can’t go towards it with a willingness to plant a few seeds, let me find the sanity to let it alone. This would be a vacation, just finding the space to do that. Glenda Jackson once said, “I used to believe that anything was better than nothing. Now I know that sometimes nothing is better.” It can be a positive statement to choose nothing.