Good morning, Dear Readers!
I was thinking about trying to write something positive & encouraging today, & I couldn’t come up with anything. Why? Honestly, I’m in a pretty lousy mood. There have been a lot of negative things going on in my life lately, & all the things I’m learning for the new book are a lot to take in. I’m learning about so many behaviors that are abusive, that I never thought were abusive. I’m seeing clearly just how many people have abused me during my life, even people I never thought of as abusive. It’s really a lot to process! Plus, the heat & bright sun of the summer tends to depress me anyway. I’m so NOT a summer gal! Give me autumn or winter instead, please!
This all makes it hard for me to be positive & encouraging right now. I was starting to feel guilty about that (only adding to my lovely mood), & prayed. God immediately showed me something. People do not need positivity & encouragement only. They need genuine people, which is what I am. While it’s good to be positive, people also need to see that sometimes, you don’t feel positive, & that is ok. Everyone has off days. Sometimes, if people see you as only positive, they feel bad about themselves when they have an off day or two. They feel as if they’re sinning, not measuring up or failing.
We all have off days, sometimes several in a row, & that is OK! Take it easy & practice good self-care on those days. As for me, I am going to take off this week, & not work on the new book. I’m going to relax as much as possible & help myself to feel better soon.
Growing up, my mother told me I was lazy more times than I can count. I never questioned this until I was almost forty years old- I simply believed I was lazy & pretty useless. If I wasn’t being productive, I felt guilty. Even if I was sick or injured, that was no excuse for not doing something useful. Society gives that same message, which helped cement that belief in me.
I still battle this dysfunctional mindset, but I’m getting better. I’m learning from my cats- cats make no apologies for relaxing or enjoying a sun puddle. They take care of themselves, & don’t feel a hint of guilt for it. Neither do wolves- my other favorite animal. When people think of wolves, they think of fierce hunters, however wolves also know how to have fun. They are wildly playful animals. They relax & have fun with each other & their cubs. Why doesn’t anyone insult wolves & cats for being lazy, I wonder, yet say it about people who aren’t busy 24/7?
I think people need to get a better understanding of what it truly means to be lazy. Goofing off when you have things to do, taking days off work for no good reason constantly or living in filth instead of cleaning your home are all examples of laziness. However, relaxing after a hard day at work isn’t lazy. Neither is spending the day in bed when you have the flu. And, if you have mental health problems like me, sometimes you need to take a day to do nothing to keep yourself from getting depressed or anxious. Sometimes you need them even if you don’t have mental health problems, actually. Those days are vital, & there is nothing wrong with them.
I believe it’s important to take time to relax, with no computer or cell phone, & accept it as a good thing, like our animal friends do. Look how happy cats & wolves are. They take time to enjoy their lives, without guilt or shame. We could do well to follow their example!