Sometimes all you want to do in life is shut down. And I’m here to tell you – past me, future me, and present you reading this – that it is okay.
Actually, I’m sure you know that it is okay to shut down. I am sure you promote and perpetuate the idea of having a little time for yourself, or days devoted to vacation, or doing what you like – for others. But maybe you don’t do that for yourself, and that’s why you are in a sitch.
I get you. Because same. I’m feeling the lowest I’ve ever been since…my last worst-I’ve-ever-been, and that’s because I kind of have been neglecting the idea of taking measures to not neglect my mental health. Ooh. Double negatives and double negligence. That can never be good.
What I’m trying to say is: I tell others to shut down and keep their heart and mind safe in a small, calm, full-of-zen pod so they can find themselves and the energy they have again, but I am a hypocrite because I am not practising that when I need it. And I need it now.
So commencing Operation Shut Down for me is a good thing – not as intimidating or as foreboding as it sounds in type-text.
But it is.
Because to me, Shutting Down means I need an hour or two to drink green tea and write or get on a bus to look at gardens and architecture as they whiZzzz by. Shutting Down means cracking open a book and not poring over its pages like its a literature reading, but appreciating it for what it is first – delivering someone else’s story. Shutting Down means I focus on myself – while focusing on other things – meaning I focus on what I can enjoy doing, while looking at the broader picture of something beautiful – which is the something I enjoy doing bit. It’s a lovely cycle of therapeutic decompression that I value. That I do not get to do.
That I did not get to do last year. 2018 was full of moments which saw me picking up a paint brush – not a literal one, God and every divine being knows I can’t paint for shite – but a metaphorical one, and dipping it into the same pot of paint, and slamming it all over my being, to erase all the cracks that had formed.
I needed to shut down to glow from within, not falsely paint a shade of comfort over my peeling discomforts.
So I’ll learn to do that in 2019. It’s taken me so long to come to this New Year’s Resolution. But here it is. Shining in front of me.