Thursday, September 24, 2009

Nothing is Easy

Over the past few years, I have discovered that whenever there is a particular life lesson that I need to learn, the universe responds with compassion by providing the ideal opportunity to learn that lesson. I've also learned that when you fail to take advantage of the opportunities the benevolent universe has offered you, she tends to bitch slap you. I know all of this, yet I still find myself getting slapped around from time to time.

Last Friday I complained that I was a little stressed about trying to find fifteen minutes to dedicate to doing nothing. I had decided to join The Next Chapter, an online book club hosted by the brilliant Jamie Ridler, and I was already stressed about the first ingredient of The Joy Diet - Nothing. I'm self-employed so I can set my own schedule. I do have deadlines and such, but I do have quite a bit of flexibility. Yet I was still a little overwhelmed by the thought of taking a mere fifteen minutes for myself. After all, the world might just stop spinning if I stop tending to everything. The ever wise Lawendula tried to point me in the right direction with this post, but I didn't listen. After all, I had Important Things to do.

The universe responded with all her love by bitch-slapping me with the flu. Turns out, I had loads of time to do nothing. Five days to do nothing but lounge around in my pajamas in my bedroom, quarantined from the world. Surprisingly, the world did not crumble down around me. The things that absolutely had to get done somehow got done. It turns out that when you're sick as a dog, you become much more efficient. A fever addled brain refuses to waste time that could be spent dreaming those lovely delirious fever dreams. It really doesn't care about anyone's Facebook status or who got eliminated on Top Chef. It just wants to sleep.

I learned so much from my week of nothing, though not necessarily the things I would have thought. First of all, I learned that I have so much more time than I think I have. I waste too much time doing things that aren't really helping me. Five minutes here and there add up to hours that could be spent more joyfully. Secondly, I learned a valuable lesson about prioritizing the things that are really important to me. When you only feel human for a few moments at a time, you quickly learn what is really important and what can be put off until later. Most importantly, I learned that I really have no more excuses. I have the time. I know what is important to me. There is no reason not to act accordingly. There is no excuse for not taking my creativity more seriously. There is no excuse for not taking better care of myself. There is no excuse for not taking every opportunity to laugh and play with my daughter. There is no excuse for not taking the time to simply enjoy life. That's so simple, isn't it? Yet it is so hard for so many of us.

Here's hoping that we all find it easier to find the joy in life as we add the next ingredient to the recipe.

Wishing you all nothing but goodness.


  1. "The ever-wise LaWendula"- guess who's blushing now!
    Thank you for that!!!
    Yes, it seems the Universe sometimes has a little sense of black humor, but it's all for your own good... we always know this only afterwards).
    But what a great lesson! Sounds so wonderful to me. Just what you needed!
    So enJOY your truth next week! Looking forward to share with you! :)

  2. What a fantastic post!!! Why do we always need to be 'hit upside the head with a 2x4' before we get the 'message'???

  3. Oh my gosh but this is a great post. Especially the part about The Universe bitch slapping you! What a superb lesson. See? The "diet" is working already. Now, I need to go write my post!

  4. Oh I love the things that you learned...this is true...we DO waste time on things that don't really matter, don't we? Being able to identify that and make changes is wonderful.

    And I love your first paragraph..had me smiling right from the get-go because of the truth in it.

    I'm looking forward to discovering our truth with you this week.

  5. As I started to read your post I thought, "we all have more time than we realize" and then you said it! Ha!

    I'm glad that you learned the lesson with a cold and not a more serious illness that was disabling.

    Enjoy your moments of nothingness. Now off to reveal our truths. This one sounds harder to me!

  6. You had me laughing so hard with the "bitch-slap" comment, amen sister, I hear you and boy have I been there.
    I am glad you are feeling better and that you received the message that you really do have the time to do nothing. See you next week

  7. lol i've had the universe bitch slap me recently too. i think i'm going to go take a nice hot bath and do nothing ;) looking forward to truth!

  8. Amazing isn't it. Sometimes the big U has to hit us up the side of the face for us to get a message. Sorry you got hit with the flu, but you really did learn a lot! Hope you are feeling much better. Enjoy your NOTHING!

  9. I'm sorry you got the flu, but wow did you learn a lot! Your speaking of the ways you waste your time has gotten me thinking about all the ways I waste time that don't serve me at all. Methinks I'll have something along those lines to grapple with during Truth week. :) Thanks for sharing this! I hope you find Wellness, Nothing and Joy in the coming weeks.

  10. I hope you are feeling better now. This flu is really tough. I'm so inspired by all of your discoveries. There was so much in your nothingness. You speak with such clarity about all of the things that you discovered about yourself. Happy continuance into Truth.

  11. WEll, that's making lemonade out of lemons in abig way! Glad you've recovered and actually came away from that time with such valuable lessons learned.

    It is true - we can either listen to the gentle nudgings or we can get knocked on our butt. Our choice.

    Have a great week working with truth!

  12. Nothing showed me how much time I really have too!