Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Art of Doing Nothing

I have read so many self-help books in my life. Do you like self-help books? I go in cycles. Sometimes I feel they are helpful, sometimes I feel they are useless and sometimes I feel they are literally life changing. I have read some great ones like Simple Abundance and some that didn't speak to me much, like Ekhart Tolle. I've read some controversial ones like Conversations With God by Neale Donald Walsch and dare I say The Bible. And I've read some relatively stupid ones that shall remain nameless. My latest is Slow Love by Dominique Browning and so far, so good. She has a lovely, easy writing style that tells her story of losing herself after losing her job. I'm about 1/3 of the way thru and it is very enjoyable. As a mom who has lost myself occasionally in the raising of my children, I identify with her.
Now I'm always on the lookout for a new self help book that speaks to me because when they're good, they're very, very good. And right now I'm in the cycle of enjoying them and seeking some self awareness and improvement. I remember reading somewhere the phrase "the art of doing nothing". Sounded so intriguing and as I had a day like that today it reminded me to look into the subject. I found it online and hope it's a good read. 
The art of doing nothing intrigues me. I'm used to feeling pretty crappy about myself when I spend a day doing nothing. But, lately I'm learning that those times are not only necessary, but sacred. Yesterday I was so busy, cleaning, taking care of the kids, doing laundry etc., I deemed it a "good" day. Today I slept in til 2 pm and proceeded to deem it a "bad" one. Why? I hadn't gone to bed til 3:30 the night before so it made sense that I would sleep late. Rhys was at his Gramma's, as he is every Tuesday, so I really had no serious obligations.
After rising I proceeded to pick up Nick, take him to Starbucks for an afterschool chat, pick up Noah and Alex, get their haircut, help with homework, do the dishes and a half hour or so of telephone "errands". I started to feel like the day was "valid" after all. 
But, I didn't need to beat myself up about sleeping late. Apparently, at least according to what my body was telling me, it was needed. I have felt so burned out lately with fixing the house and everything that goes along with raising four boys that I really feel my mind needed it as well. 
Louise Hay is one of my favorite self help authors. I won't go in to her life story but if you're looking for inspiration, you will find it there. I recently read an article on her Facebook page about being gentle with oneself. Accepting yourself as you are, at the exact place you are in life. Are you a little, or a lot, overweight? Ok. Are you broke? Are you in an unhappy marriage?, etc. Wherever you are, accept it, come to terms with it, dare I say~bless it... That's what Louise and other teachers, such as herself, instruct. 
How freeing! So I slept in, big deal. I ate that donut when I was trying so hard to diet. You get the point. Start from where you are but not only that, bless where you are.
Just a subject I am thinking about today that I wanted to share with my friends. My readers, who I am so fortunate to even have. It has always been a dream of mine to write and share things with people that have transpired in my life that I feel may be of value to someone else. So, that's all. Just a random musing today that, for some reason, was on my heart. If it blesses you, wonderful. Obviously, I needed to write it. To get it off my chest. To somehow put out into the universe that I am ok with what I've done. 
It's ok to be busy, but I think it's ok to equally have periods of doing nothing.  Maybe it's the way I was raised, or the country I live in that makes me feel well, weird just saying this. Maybe it's more of an Eastern philosophy. I'm not sure, but I know it feels right. I just brewed myself some iced green tea and took a hot shower. I think I will play around on Facebook or Pinterest, watch a program or just sit in the silence. Whatever I do I choose to deem it "good".

Image Via fivestaralliace.com

Blessings to you <3 Melissa


  1. Hi Melissa,

    So nice to meet you! After having read some of your posts, I find you to be a very honest writer; someone who people can really relate to. I look forward to more of your inspirational views and images!

    Your newest follower,


  2. Hi Melissa,

    So happy to have found you! Congrats on being featured on Brenda's Cozy Little House. I read 2 of your blog posts and they really resonate with me. Yes, I've definitely read my share of self-help books and I love Louise Hay! We all go through life cycles. Raising a family is a very important job but I understand the struggle to be okay with doing nothing. I just had this conversation with a friend of mine. I'm 57 and just retired early from my career due to health issues. I just retired December 2012 and I'm struggling with trying to adjust to this new life of mine without working. My sleep cycle is all messed up but then who cares what time we stay up to our what time we get up?

    1. Hi Sandy! I'm so happy you found me too!! I wish you the best with your health issues! I struggle with many myself. I hope your retirement brings you much joy and excitement!! You sound like me with the sleep patterns. I am soooo screwed up right now!!!! Thank you for your lovely comments!!!


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