Resting vs. laziness

Right now, I’m trying to balance allowing myself to rest versus falling into laziness.

On one end of the spectrum, I’m being kinder with myself when it comes to recharging, even if it means staying at home most of the day (or the entire day). I work regular office hours Monday to Friday, so previously, I was obsessed with making sure I had stuff going on during weekends. I’d consider weekends wasted if I didn’t have a big event or activity to go to.

Well, I realised that with my lifestyle, I’m getting a big chunk of my social life in the weekdays, anyway. Since my office is in the city, it’s easy for me to meet up with friends for lunch or dinner or go to events after work.

I’ve been doing a lot of reading and reflecting lately (this blog is an offshoot of that) and I’ve noticed the effect it’s had on my mindset. I’ve noticed that I enjoy living in a space that is clean and tidy (with my baked goodies on hand). Since then, I’ve been kinder to myself about just blocking off time to recharge and reflect at home, or if I spend a chunk of it doing housework or cooking or baking.

At the same time, though, I don’t want to waste my time slacking off. I’m trying to figure out where the line is drawn between allowing myself time to recharge and being lazy.

So far, I’ve come up with this: recharging is intentional. I feel refreshed afterwards, and realise that I wouldn’t have done things differently. When I’m slacking off, there’s something I know that I have or want to do, but the reason isn’t that I’m too tired; it’s that I’m lazy. It’s not energy that’s the problem, it’s willpower and motivation. When I cancel something because of laziness, I eventually feel like that time is wasted — I usually spend it in an unproductive stupor, maybe mindlessly surfing social media or watching Netflix. I don’t feel any better afterwards; instead, I regret at not having made the effort.

To be fair, I don’t fall into this trap when it comes to keeping appointments with people. I’ve never been the type to back out of things last minute because I suddenly don’t feel like going. Since it’s a willpower problem, I make myself go (I mean, there must’ve been some part of me that was really interested in the activity otherwise I wouldn’t have said yes in the first place), and I usually find that once I’m there, I feel much better and I end up really enjoying myself.

One of my friends has a reputation for being a flake. Recently, I ranted to a mutual friend after she backed out last minute from something I organised. My friend told me, “Oh, she’s really like that — she’s a flake.” I also remembered another friend who’d said the same thing about her. It made me think — what a horrible reputation to have! To have people talk about how you’re a person who doesn’t keep their word, and who is easy to fall into excuses with the slightest inconvenience! People do notice these things though — I haven’t seen that person invited to our recent get-togethers.

My problem is sometimes I can’t do this for personal tasks. When it’s stuff with other people, where there is a set date and time, I’ll definitely be there. But when it comes to things I have to do — like housework, or keeping in touch with people — those things gets pushed later and later. (Maybe I should start imposing deadlines for them?)

While writing this post, I realised — I want to be known as someone who got a lot of things done. Not because I crammed my schedule full of things to do, but because I didn’t waste my time doing things that didn’t matter.

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