A lot of the time, I end up forgetting to plan and schedule downtime. With our smartphones in our pockets, we’re always connected. So it’s almost too easy for us to always be connected and to just “do a bit here” or “do a bit there”. Ultimately, what that means is we’re not getting enough switched off time. So how important is it to plan downtime?
Planning Down Time
When it comes to planning out our day, we’re usually great at adding in important projects, online conference calls, client meetings etc, down to the minute, our day is planned out.
As for taking “time-off”, we’ll usually have our annual leave, or booked holidays marked in our calendars, mostly as a way to make sure we don’t book anything else in by accident.
But how often do you block off time in your calendar just for you?
If you’re like me, probably not very often. But that’s changing.
Making The Time
“If we never take time, how can we have time?”
– The Merovingian in Matrix Reloaded
By scheduling in some downtime, whether it be to watch a movie, or to play a video game, or whatever it is, it takes the same level of priority as your calls or meetings do.
I think of it as taking the time to refuel my internal energy tank. Throughout the week it’s slowly depleted as I focus on work, getting things done, meetings, coaching, etc. By the time I get to the weekend, I want to focus on some activities that are all about me feeling better and recharged.
So, how important is it to plan downtime?
For me, this is hugely important. For years, I’ve neglected my well being. I’ve not realised that sometimes saying “no” is far more powerful and beneficial to me than saying “yes” and then just going with the flow.
Finding some time to play some video games (or watch YouTubers play video games, like Call Me Kevin or James Turner), or taking a day to enjoy time with a friend, or family members. Whatever it is, I aim to focus on just that for the duration, giving me an all-important refill of my own emotional and physical energy. Ready for the week to come.
The day goes by quickly, then before you know it a week has passed. IN reality, it’s already 6.5 months of 2020 that have passed. Before you realise it, a lot of time has passed and you’re own personal energy stores are low. By the end of it, your ability to function well and fast for everything else in your life starts to dwindle, and you’re simply trying to survive rather than flourish.
So, if your diary doesn’t have some of that all-important “down time” planned in, it might be time to start scheduling it. What do you to do to relax and recharge your energy, I’m interested to know?