I’m trying to reassess stopping. Taking time out is hard for me. I think some of it has to do with my upbringing. The more I read of the affirmations for my inner child, the more I think it was programmed into me. It isn’t part of who I am. It is part of what my parents taught me to be. Thus, it can be unlearned.
Stopping is good if you are in a car. If you don’t stop at a red light, you’ll get run over. If you don’t stop to get gas you’ll be stranded.
We stop when we leave jobs or boyfriends. We stop when we drop out of college. We admit that we just can’t take it anymore, so we walk away.
But I want to stop before I get to that point. I want to stop as a sign of strength, not of weakness. I want to stop so I can go.
I stop every day. I stop and make time to sleep. I have an uneasy relationship with sleep. That is a third of my day, thus a third of my life just gone. But I know from hard experience that if I don’t make time for sleep then nothing ever works right. Not getting enough sleep put me in the hospital. Sadly the medical answer was to give me sleeping pills and not to teach me good habits that will promote sleep, so I had to figure that trick out for myself.
So now I’m learning how to stop. I’ve signed up for silent retreats. I’m taking time off from work. I’m turning off the TV. I’m trying to get into the habit of sitting still. I’m trying to not cram “stuff” into my day the same way a hoarder crams “stuff” into her house. Sometimes I feel that every moment has to be filled with something to do. I’m starting to see that as a result of my childhood.
It isn’t healthy. Sure, there has to be a balance. I don’t want to lapse into not doing anything. I did that for years. But I don’t want to do so much that I stop being able to enjoy life.
I think the more I learn how to stop, the more clearly I’ll be able to think.