Friday, September 23, 2011

How to Be Lazy

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I know...the Bible has something to say about laziness and idol hands.  Overall -- not good for your life.  I also know that rest is not the same thing as laziness, but my friend has challenged me that perhaps I need to go to the extreme of laziness in order to find that middle place of rest.

So, at some point in the coming days, I'm planning to be lazy.  For one full day while the kids are at school, I will do only things that I genuinely want to do.  No "shoulds."  No guilt.  No planned out schedule.

Lazy for a day.

I know this sounds ridiculous, but I'm not sure I can do it.  And yet, this heaviness that hangs over me, this pressure of always living under the self-imposed gun, has got to go.  As I sit back and think about all of this, I wonder if this fear of rest is actually just another trust issue with me.

Do I really trust that if I heed the call to rest that the things that are truly important will still get done?
Do I trust that even if people do look down on me for taking a break, it doesn't really matter?
Do I trust that my self-worth isn't really based on what I do, but who I am?

If you've been reading me for awhile, you might be thinking, "Same ole story, second verse."  I know.  I know.

I've just checked my calendar.  Next Thursday, I'm wide open.  Next Thursday, I'm gonna be lazy.

What are your best "How to be Lazy tips?"  Please leave them for me in the comments.  All advice that I take on Thursday will be featured next Friday morning when I report on my day of laziness.  Ready...go!

Linking with Caffeinated Randomness.


  1. My best tip is to call it something else. If you are always feeling "under the gun," then taking a day of rest, a midweek sabbatical is not really being lazy. Call it a Refresh day or just a Day Off or something along those lines.

  2. Buy a beautiful magazine and read a nice/interesting article. Use the article for a new blog. My lazy moments are the most productive moments ...
    Have a walk in an autumnal forest, that's entertainment! Or watch youtube videos with funny bloopers. Succes.

  3. Since all Good Things come from Our Lord, I believe this is His Gift to you. A full day of being lazy! Accept the blessing and enjoy :)


  4. Don't worry about what needs to be done. This is something that I struggle with. Just need to forget about things and not stress. It's still going to be there when I get home. Enjoy your laziness.

  5. Yes, I like the idea of phrasing it differently: perhaps a Day of Refreshment -- what will refresh your soul? I recommend being outside, bringing a Bible, a pen, a paper journal, a blanket,a favorite book, your art supplies, and also grab favorite food. I used to get a chicken salad croissant with chips and a coke and go eat it by the lake. It helps me to be out of the house & away from looking at all of my to-dos. I would also recommend getting away from media to refresh your soul. When I take a break on the computer, I don't come back to my life rested.

    I have listed my activities that help refresh me but they may not work for you. Instead you may want to think about what it is that you used to do before you had lots of responsibilities as wife, mom, ministry leader that you did for fun? Go back to those things. Hopefully they will enable you to relax more quickly.

    Keep listening to the Spirit and following Him and thanks for sharing it with us in blogland!

  6. I recommend laying in bed. Not sleeping just laying there. now, my favorite time to do this is after I wake up but before I get up, so that could be difficult with children. Another great bed activity is just reading in bed before you go to sleep. ahh, relaxing. You could take a walk, read, watch tv, do something crafty - just basically anything you want to do. Enjoy!

  7. I struggle with laziness too. I hurt my darn back and I am having a very hard time resting it. It is finally cool and I want to do all of this house work and it's killing me to try and just sit around! Good luck being lazy!

  8. Sometimes scheduling a "lazy"day is a necessary step of faith. To trust that God really can keep the world spinning without our help.;) And, yes, the important things will get done! Enjoy your lazy day.

  9. I TOTALLY want to do this!!! I would go for a walk (not a run...because in walking you can really breathe in your surroundings). And I would buy an In Style magazine or a Better Homes and Gardens, and sit in the sun on the back patio. And then I might take a nap. And have a snack -- something choclately. Or perhaps a scone with my morning coffee, after I dropped the kids off at school.

    I have the whole day I just need to do it!!

    Can't wait to hear about it Jen...

  10. I have lots to say (as usual) but here's what I'll leave here:
    - take a slow walk...I think this would be really good for you, in particular
    - plan nothing, even if you like our advice! don't cling to it/ plan it
    - listen to your heart...this is about doing what YOU want to do...listen, the response you will validate and your heart will sing. it's amazing what self-love can do

    remember, you may have to do more than one lazy day!!! :)

    one last sure to eat bon-bons. ;)

  11. Oh, we are so hard on ourselves, aren't we?

    But what do we teach our children with this behavior? That we are not worthy of rest? That they cannot be trusted to do, that they are not capable?

    We can call it a date and go somewhere with dear hubbie-a walk, a picnic, hanging out in a lawn chair on the beach.

    We can call it an Artist's Date (a la Julia Cameron of The Artist's Way), and go do something to refresh ourselves at the well-a museum, sitting at an outdoor cafe, sipping a yummy raspberry tea, reading at the beach, attending an exhibition, savoring each item, stopping wherever and however long you desire.

    Let yourself go. Let go. Go. Get rested and recharged. And I agree: Eat bon-bons. :)

  12. Go for it, but definitely don't call it being lazy. Think of it as nourishment and a time to recover from the busy. You have to take care of you if you're going to be all your family needs you to be. You already know that though, so be guilt free!

  13. Jen, I love that you are sharing from your heart and we get to follow along. Don't ever apologize for repeating yourself - this is what is important to you. For your day of laziness, I would recommend a peaceful place, a good book and a comfortable place to sit. Enjoy!

  14. I identify. Hub and I have recently set up one evening, every other week, that is Mommy Night. I get to go - alone - wherever I want. In times past when I get this rare freedom, I end up buzzing around like crazy anyway, feeling like I have to fit EVERYTHING I want to do into that one time, because who knows when I'll get it again, so I end up feeling exhausted anyway. But now...with the promise of another free time not too far from now...I don't *have* to get it all in. It's freeing. I hope you get more lazy times. (Hi, there! I jumped over from Beautiful Things...looking forward to reading more!)

  15. Excellent!!
    I want that day!!!

    Hmmm...what to do...
    Nuthin! Stop trying to plan it, already. Seriously, let go, let the day play out.

    You can do it...

  16. Are we talking about Thursday, Sept. 29th? If so, how about coffee at the Barnes and Noble by Lakeline Mall? I don't have to leave for Leaky until around 11 or 12.

    Or you could just lay in bed with a good book (my favorite thing to do). :)

  17. Love all the comments!! Don't' call it lazy as that has negative connotations. A much needed, well-deserved Day of Rest. Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and then Jen Day.

  18. Sabbath- On the seveth day:He rested- I always did the ya,ya, thing when I read these, until we really started doing them, carving out time to BE. Don't call it a lazy day. Walk into it in obedience, it really is beautiful and so nourishing.

  19. I think this sounds very much like a "Sabbath." And back in the OT, God commanded His people to do this every single week! I have always been baffled, yet intrigued, by that. I mean, one day every single week where I am COMMANDED to do NOTHING. Wow!

    Then I noticed something in scripture. The day BEFORE the Sabbath was called The Day of Preparation. This was the day that everyone prepared for a day of nothing. I don't know what the men did, but I know the women cooked enough for two days. When I saw that, it really excited me.

    I guess one of my biggest problems with taking a day off is all the work that piles up if I don't stay on top of it. It almost feels like punishment, ya know? Like, it's not really worth it to do "nothing" because the NEXT day, I'll have to do twice as much work--and I'm already feeling overwhelmed! It doesn't feel worth it, after the fact.

    But then I thought about vacations--before vacation, I always take lots of time to prepare for it. I make sure we have food, clean clothes, etc. I pay the bills. I make arrangements for someone to get our mail and our paper and feed our cat. I let people know I will be gone and unable to respond to e-mails. I write extra posts for my blog or announce a blog break.

    Maybe I could do a mini-version of that every week before my Sabbath?

    Maybe on days that I want to do nothing or take a Sabbath or be "lazy" or whatever, I have to prepare for it? I have to make sure my laundry is caught up. I have to plan ahead for meals (even if that means we order pizza and eat left overs.) Maybe we will eat off paper plates that day so I don't have to do dishes.

    Whatever I need to do to prepare for my day of rest.

    I hope that helps.

  20. Psst... Jen... does your intent to post a Friday morning report on your unplanned day mean that you "plan" to write up the report on Thursday night?
    You know, Friday afternoon would be just fine, too. Take the WHOLE day off, girl.

  21. Hey dearie! I suggest it be a day of "recouping and regrouping." We all need a day off, that's for certain. I'm in dire need of one. Since my Dad's illness it has been non-stop and it is really beginning to show on me. I'm in the process of working to get a handle on things and have to realize that some things have got to go for now. There will be another season to pick them back up or perhaps not, but it will be okay. Enjoy your day and may you be all the better for it. Blessings my dear!

  22. "Do I trust that even if people do look down on me for taking a break, it doesn't really matter?
    Do I trust that my self-worth isn't really based on what I do, but who I am?"

    Difficult ones. Almost impossible! And let me tell you, it's difficult to be when you're totally down, actually unable to function - and surrounded by those overly effective people who sit in a dozen committees, attend every church event (and some of the neighbour church, too), take care of their elders - and some other elders, too - and all this while also working full time. That if anything really makes one feel worthless!

    It actually almost ruined a friendship from me. Or at least was a big part of the troubles. It also made it difficult for me to go to church - to be again reminded of those energizer bunnies and also to be expected to do my job (tending to the mixer board and playing the flute). It was easier to stay home - other than the feeling of being disapproved by Mr Right.

    Oh, God save us from being surrounded by perfect people!

  23. I think I'm responding to this AFTER your actual restful day. But I'm way behind on my email/blogs as we've been traveling for the last week!

    This is a grand idea, Jen. I used to give my kids the chance to do this - an occasional surprise day that I called 'mental health' day. They got to sleep in, wear their jammies as long as they wanted to, watch a few favorite tv shows, read, eat their favorite foods and generally laze around. It made a huge difference in their enjoyment of the school year to have these days once in a while.

    And I take them, too. NO plans, lots of sleep, even staying in sleepwear extra long! Sitting in the backyard with a favorite book or magazine, giving thanks for what I see around me and for the warmth of the sun, being gentle with myself and open to the wonders of life, the ones that I'm too often just too dang busy to even see, much less ponder and appreciate. Hope it was a GRAND day.

  24. Loved hearing your beautiful heart, as well as reading all the great comments. Can't wait to hear all about your day!
    Love to you
    Cindy :)


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