I couldn’t figure out why, seeing that well, delicious food is all around and it would be a shame not to taste it all. (And it might have helped that the French word for “greedy” is “gourmand”, which evoked a more gourmet glutton.)
As an adult, I sort of see my parents’ point – it is more ladylike to show hum, some restraint. But nevertheless, I still prefer the company of people who love their food.
The same goes with being lazy. Laziness wasn’t particularly encouraged at home, and if you ask me that’s a bit of a shame. My hyperactive Dad used to always ask whether we fancied “doing something”, while we were in the middle of say, having a cup of tea, playing with the dog, or reading a novel. As if we weren’t already doing something.
As you might have guessed from reading previous posts, I’m a big advocate of slow, restorative activities. Especially those that appear as though you’re not really doing anything useful.
First because I don’t believe life is always about being useful.
Second, because I am sure day-dreaming, navel-gazing time is essential to imagination and creativity… not to mention your mental health.
When your mind is empty, you create space for more. When you let go of the ongoing chatter in your head and allow yourself to just be, you open up endless possibility for new ideas.
Some of the greatest advances to science were made by people while they were in the bath (Archimedes), or snoozing under a tree (Newton). Coincidence?
Downtime is never wasted time. I’ve heard people say that the busier you are, the more time you should spend in meditation, because you will be able to achieve more in your everyday life. (The Dalai-Lama, who we can only assume i a little busy being a world leader, is said to do four hours a day).
Your head will be clearer. Your problems will seem smaller. Solutions to dilemnas might come to you out of the blue.
We all lead busy lives, so next time you find yourself overloaded with commitments at work or at home, why not try taking just a few minutes to be lazy and daydream?
Perhaps you can just pause to notice the delicious smells rising as you cook dinner. Or sing along to your favourite song. Give your dog a good belly rub, or pause to admire the flowers on your windowsill. Sip tea. Cloud gaze. Whatever makes your heart sing.
Be present. Contemplate. Let your thoughts wander. Watch your problems disappear.
Cherish this quiet time, as soon enough you will be called back to your life’s busy-ness.
You may want to bring a notebook for when you start getting genius ideas…