This past Christmas break, I learned an insight about myself. In order to feel truly rested during a break, I need two days to myself. This insight came as a result of the frantic pace that comes with Christmas – cramming to finish as much work as you can before shut-down, travelling all over to visit family, tending to personal projects and end-of-year business, etc.
Two days probably sounds like an overblown indulgence to you, but I realized that in order for me to feel a sense of rest and recharge, I need two consecutive days for my own uses. With one day, I get a chance to catch up on things – sleep, bills, messages, work, etc. But two days gives me more freedom to do what I usually need to do – binge. If I only have one day to myself, I can’t “binge” on whatever it is I want to binge on. If I were to binge during that one day, I would feel like I’ve just put off doing work for a day, and now everything is piled up further.
But if I have two consecutive days, I get one day to binge, guilt-free, on whatever it is that I want to do (sleep, food, video games, Netflix, YouTube, etc). I get a chance to get it out of my system, guilt-free.
The second day, then, is my chance to put my life back together. I can plan out my tasks. I can take care of personal maintenance tasks. I clean and de-clutter. I get a chance to breathe and focus. It puts life back into order after the mess that comes from indulgence.
It has also made me realize that I’m not balancing things out well in my life if I have to wait for extended vacation breaks to get two consecutive days to myself. I really should be more mindful of what I schedule for my weekends.
I can only follow this model of binge/purge and order because I am privileged to have a good job and stability in my life. I recognize that this is not available to everyone, and I appreciate that I’m at a point in my life where it’s something available to me. For that, I’m thankful.