Take a conscious break

Take a conscious breakIt’s Sunday here while I am writing this. Sunday morning to be precise. And I feel that special Sunday morning calm. Here where I live, I can still feel the difference between Monday to Friday and the weekend. And between the Saturday and the Sunday. People seem to take a conscious break.

On Sundays the world seems to come to a pause. The day starts later, people walk more slowly, no one mows the grass or hammers away on something. No machines, no noise, no hectic – only calm.

I love it.

Times have changed a lot since I was a child. Back then the Sunday was sacred, it was the time for contemplation and family visits. It was the time to dress in special clothes, to enjoy drinking coffee together and having meals without the need to jump up in order to do something. It was the time for jigsaw puzzles, reading, listening to music, for conversations, for hobbies. In short, it was what we now would call “quality time”.

We didn’t have to create it, it was build into the rhythm of the week. Society valued it and those who would disturb the Sunday Calm would get noticed and often rejected.

Nowadays stores are open 24/7, there are events everywhere, in many places no one minds working on Sundays or minds others doing things that break the silence. Not everywhere of course. There are still places like those where I live. But as society we have gotten rid of the rhythm of activity and rest. For the mind, for the body, for the soul.

Times sure have changed. Change is not necessarily a good thing. Evolution is, but change can go backwards.

Think about it… What do we all crave when life gets too hectic? What products and services are offered nowadays that were available weekly, just because it was Sunday, only 40-50 years ago?

  • Time for spiritual life.
  • Time for contemplation and reflection.
  • Time with our spouses, children, family and friends.
  • Time for a hobby.
  • Time to take a break from it all, get some emotional and physical distance from daily routines and work.
  • Time to rest, refresh, replenish.

In short: Quality time.

You might want to reflect upon this. Do you still celebrate Sunday?

And if not, do you schedule time for these moments and all the aspects above? Did you put them on your cake of life while decorating?

To take a conscious break are so important.

  • Because it recharges the battery before it is totally empty.
  • Because we feel more balanced both internally and in relationship with the world around us.
  • Because we can reflect and contemplate and take better decisions.
  • Because we can choose to fill these time frames with things that are important to us.
  • Because distance creates overview and helps us set our priorities.
  • Because it enhances our overall productivity.
  • Because after every break we have the possibility of a new start and doing things differently.
  • Because they give us the possibility to socialize and connect on a personal level.
  • Because we can go for a walk and get some fresh air.
  • Because we can cook a delicious meal with fresh ingredients.
  • Because with breaks we are happier and healthier.
With conscious breaks we are happier and healthier! #relaxation Click To Tweet

Breaks are important – just because.

Even when you already take those conscious breaks, which I hope you do, reflecting upon and renewing our commitment is valuable from time to time.

Why is a break important for you? When do you want to take your big break during the week? How do you want to use that break?

Those are the big questions for today. I’ll leave you with them. :-) Do you have great suggestions for a conscious break? Share your ideas belows so that we all can be inspired.

Have a restfull day! – Margot

*Note: of course I am not romantizising the past. People had to work really hard and not everyone could take that break. I’m talking more about the tendency in society.

Title image: picture by Artur Szlesinger

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4 Responses

  1. Virginia says:

    Margot – I hope thousands of people take this advice to heart and practice it. It is a mainstay in my life – I require it.
    “Me time” and sharing time is critical to recharge the battery.

    • Margot van Aanholt says:

      It is easy to implement small islands of relaxation into the day. All it takes is one conscious minute of total focus on a specific sensation. Tasting an apple, looking at a beautiful flower – as long as you totally immerse yourself in it. It works miracles.

  2. Emily says:

    I have your book with the one minute exercises. I do not do that all the time, but when I do I think I should do it more often. My kids love them as well. Especially the one with the fruits.

    • Margot van Aanholt says:

      Your kids probably like it that they can chew loudly for that one minute :-) Fun aside, children love these kind of exercises. I think it is because they do it all the time anyway: they are immersed in their activities as long as we don’t take them out of their focus.

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