Week by week
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For many of us, our working week ends on Friday afternoon. Time for myself at last! Having time for myself is absolutely essential so that I can grow, recuperate and re-orientate myself. To re-establish life-sustaining order from life-impairing disorder. It is not so important what I actually do during this time. The main thing is that I can take a break from a hectic life and its constant demands and focus once again on the flow of life within myself.
I do not need to have a bad conscience if I let my duties take a back seat. On the contrary: my conscience should actually urge me to do so — in the interests of self-preservation and against a misunderstood sense of sacrifice. Of course, making sacrifices can mean helping and supporting others. But sacrificing oneself should not mean destroying oneself by self-neglect. Self-preservation means taking time for yourself, and sometimes even stealing this time if necessary.
I am allowed to grant myself these breaks because simply functioning out of a sense of duty isn’t everything. Because all of us sometimes not only need to slow down our breathing and our heartbeat but also to let our minds take a breather if we want to survive intact. And because, refreshed and with new energy, we will once again find the motivation to address new tasks. Indeed, we will even enjoy them.
Our lives are woven into a large and rhythmical context. We experience it in our heartbeat, breathing in and out, sleeping and waking. We experience the rhythm of day and night, summer and winter, heat and cold, rain and sunshine. And we also find this protective and sustaining rhythm in working and resting, working and relaxing, giving and taking, in having time for others and time for ourselves.
There are some people who, when facing retirement, see themselves as simply being sidelined. But this period of retirement gives us the possibility to slow down, to try out new things, to reflect and to take more time for ourselves. Time to live. Perhaps we should keep this in mind especially now at the beginning of summer and the holiday period.