Although I try to keep this blog within the “health & wellness” realm, I wanted to share an article a friend mentioned to me the other day (thanks Kait!), The ‘Busy’ Trap by Tim Kreider. It’s a great article, and so true! I won’t be giving you a synopsis because I actually want you to read this one. Take a few moments now… I’m going to tie it into some of the “healthy and happy” themes I touched upon yesterday: live each day happily, laugh often, be thankful & give yourself some quiet time every day.
I’ve been pretty busy this week. I don’t know about you, but I’m one of those people who doesn’t like having nothing to do, or at least that’s what I thought. Like when someone asks what you’re up to for the week, and you are overcome with a legit fear if you have no plans. I mean, what on Earth will they think of you? Yikes! I’m sure it’s like this everywhere, but here in NYC it’s especially bad. There is no shortage of things to do regardless of what time it is, and it seems like everyone is always doing something. There’s a stigma attached to not having plans, and it’s one I’ve always tried to avoid.
Several years ago, I filled my schedule with going out to eat after work, getting my drink on (way too often) and fitting in the gym on occasion – only if it didn’t interfere with my social life of course. Whenever adults or family members would ask me how I spent my days in NYC I would say, “eating, drinking and shopping”…I mean, that is literally all I did do!
Gradually, as I’ve matured (at least as far as I’m personally concerned), I spend most evenings working out in some capacity and making dinner. The last couple of years I’ve kept myself busy by running and training for marathons – until I got diagnosed with runner’s knee last December right after I ran the Philly Marathon. This was a major setback, nothing short of depressing. To go from running 40 miles a week to nothing, well, I won’t even drag you into all of my emotional turmoil. Long story short, once I couldn’t run anymore I didn’t know what to do other than cry and feel sorry for myself. I started physical therapy (PT) of course, but I literally was bored out of my mind.
What did I do? I tried to come up with “hobbies” – lame, I know. I immediately took on a knitting class. Once the class ended and I was on my own, I messed up my project and didn’t know how to fix it. Seven months later, my project is still sitting in my knitting bag half done.
So, what next? After a few weeks of PT I was able to at least do some physical activity again – I took on Pilates (love!), kicked up my yoga practice and tried my best to use the elliptical (hate!). That helped, along with spending my evenings watching whatever TV series on Netflix I hadn’t already seen. I never wanted to go out drinking because unlike when I was “young”, I had zero desire to go out on work nights. Besides, it was cold out (think: Jan/Feb/March). Thank goodness I started my program at IIN. Finally! Something I was passionate about that would take up my time; it was nothing short of a miracle. And so begins, the busy life…
Now I feel nothing but busy, and I vehemently dislike it. Aside from school and my newfound obsession with this blog, my friends and I enjoy buying Groupons. This week I took Beginner Basics at The Sewing Studio New York because it was about to expire (I bought it back in my days of boredom). I learned how to use a sewing machine, and made a zippered toiletry bag! Yay me!
Wednesday night was movie night – The Dark Knight Rises… If you’re wondering, I was underwhelmed. I’ll leave it at that.
By the time last night rolled around, I literally wanted to do nothing! Luckily I was able to somewhat motivate for some yoga, then made dinner and packed for my trip home to Massachusetts this weekend.
These days I feel like I have way too many plans for my own good. I even need to make an effort to get to the gym or do yoga, like actually make time for it. I need to make time for almost everything. But I’ve learned a very valuable lesson from my busy life: don’t be afraid to have no plans! Who cares what anyone else thinks. If anything, we should pity those busier than us, they are delusional. Busy people don’t have time to live each day happily, laugh often, be thankful & give themselves some quiet time every day. Take a few deep breaths here. Bring on the downtime please, it’s been far too long since I’ve had a mani/pedi. Not to mention, I have a blog to write!
Last Night’s Dinner
Quick mention of dinner last night since it was that good, then you can start enjoying the weekend. I came across this great site, Ambitious Kitchen, with lots of great recipes I cannot wait to try. Last night I made Vegan Tomato, Chickpea and Sweet Potato Soup because who doesn’t feel like soup when it feels like 91 degrees outside? With the AC on in my apartment, it was fine. This soup was super easy to make, and was delicious. Spicy enough on its own, but I added a little sriracha for kick. Looking forward to having some at lunch!