Sunday, September 25, 2011

Ran out of gas

Ah, a luxurious bubble bath, scented candles flicker,
relaxing music in the back ground,
and you float on a cloud of lavender scented warmth.
You sink deeper into the water and let the heat caress your flesh like a lover.
You sigh. Tired muscles unwind, your spirit rejoices as peace seeps into your bones.

Bang. Bang. Bang.

You bolt upright, tranquility shattered along with your nerves.

Pound. Pound.
"Hey mom, are you done yet? I need to pee."

Sound familiar?

We all need time off, our own space, and we need to treat it as sacred.

Because it is.

What does that mean?
Sacred is anything set apart from the usual or ordinary in life.
Sacred time doesn't allow the mundane to insert itself and overtake it.
Your emotional, mental and physical health depend on your achieving sacred time for yourself.
It's not negotiable.

What qualifies as sacred time?
Anything that centers on you, feeds your soul, rejuvenates your mind and body.

It can take many forms:

A walk around the block.
Reading a good book.
Writing in your journal.
A massage.
Playing with the dog.
Lunch with friends.
Attending your writer meetings.

It's time set aside to honor the unique gift you are to the world.
Don't roll your eyes.
You are a gift.
Stop ignoring the box, unwrap the darn thing and enjoy it.

Look at it this way, you put gas in your car, change the oil, get a tune up.
Doing those things doesn't make you hang your head in shame and feel guilty.
Filling the gas tank so you can pick up the kids from school doesn't cause remorse.

Of course not.

Sacred time for yourself is the same thing.
You're like a car and require regular maintenance to keep running.
Most of us ignore this until we break down.
Didn't your mother tell you to take care of your things?

If you never put oil in the engine you'll burn up the motor.
Sitting on the side of the road with an empty gas tank doesn't help anyone.
Yet, we expect our selves to push forward,
never filling our tank or oil or changing the spark plugs.

Does this make any sense?
A well oiled machine runs smoothly and years longer than one that's neglected.
You can't help anyone if your battery is dead.

This week, write five things in your journal that fill your tank.
Do them.
Schedule time at least once a week to take part in these activities.
Do not allow other things to intrude.
Sacred time is not to be flouted.

Write down how doing these things makes you feel.
If you come up with more than five things, great, go for ten.
It's terrific if you schedule three times a week seeing to your maintenance.
And it is maintenance.

As always, let me know how you do.


  1. For me, it's early morning before anyone else is awake. A cup of coffee and watching the sunrise gives me a sense of "renewal." Thanks for your timely advice.

  2. great post--I, too, have early morning as my time. I thought having several bathrooms might solve the problem referenced in the post, but then there's the extra time spent cleaning them. Time that could be mine alone!

  3. ...and sometimes we just need someone's blog post to give us permission.


  4. For me it's reading a book out of my genre. It charges me to just be able to enjoy reading without comparing it to my own work. :-)

    Lovely post. Thank you.

  5. Reading a good book - without worrying about all the stuff I have to do - fills that need for me. Unfortunately, about the only time I do this is either when I'm on vacation, or right before bed, when I'm already half asleep. I'll have to see about changing that - thanks for the reminder!

  6. Sitting on the front porch in the evening with the dogs fills my tank. Sometimes I'll read a book or flip through a magazine and sometimes I just do nothing but enjoy the peace and quiet.

    Your post is a good reminder, though, that I need to fill the tank a little more often.

  7. As a massage therapist, I recommend once a month massages to people all the time. f they say they can't afford it, I tell them the same thing. You change your oil in your car. The least you can do is give yurself a tune-up. For the price of dinner and a movie, you can do something for yourself that has long lasting benefits and nurtures your soul. Thanks for spreading the love!

  8. Playing with my puppy energizes me. Of course, it also wears me out. :D Great post. As always, you make good points.

  9. My writing group and book club are my "gas stations." Always feel renewed after a meeting.

  10. Such great advice Sandy. I love your motivational lessons.