Stealing healing time – take 20 minutes

When we changed our lifestyle almost the first thing I noticed was ‘time’. I suddenly seemed to have lots of it. And that is something to savour.

I have found that when one changes location, job, etc. it gives you a sense of having more time. Maybe that is why I like to embrace change. And I have also found it takes time to fill time. (Sounding very profound here.) That once I settle somewhere, after a fashion, after one has started to make friends, started to understand the new needs of work or found new projects to undertake, that time seems more fleeting.

So every now and then, fairly regularly really, I like to steal time back. I started doing this when I took up napping. I had learned that 20 minutes was an optimum time for napping (you don’t fall into REM sleep and you wake feeling refreshed.) I started to think if 20 minutes refreshed me from a doze even, what if I took 20 minutes for other pleasures.

Now I try to give myself 20 minutes on many fronts. If the weather is sunny, I like to sit with the animals and write a letter. They enjoy the company as much as I do, so its feel good factor all around. And because taking 20 minutes feels slightly decadent this day and age, I enjoy it all the more.

Having a pet is perfect for having to give yourself time. You have to take the time to walk your dog, or give up your lap to your cat for a purring moment, or, in the case of our duck, go on the search for worms she can quaff down. Sometimes, when I am feeling frenetic I begrudge this time, but I then lecture myself that they are giving me the luxury of time. Time to walk or to just sit, think of nothing or plan my day.

My 20 minutes even stretch to listening to my French lessons. I would love to say, living in France, that I regularly practice, am superbly virtuous, but… no. My general excuse is I haven’t the time. So, whenever I haven’t the time, I like to steal some time.

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