Break the Routine……

It is so easy to fall into a routine, to realize that an entire week has slipped by, a month, or more. If you commute any distance at all, Lord knows you spend time crawling in traffic and dodging idiot drivers. If you have children at home, there are more obligations that you can count, and if you have parents or elderly relatives that you are helping out with, you may not be able to even stop and think of everything that you’re supposed to be doing. People say, “Have a nice weekend,” and for so many that often consists of taking care of a list of errands – not to mention numerous activites you might be scheduled for. If you own a house, then add in the seemingly endless small and large tasks like seeing about that seeping faucet, replacing the weather stripping on the doors, etc.,.

If this is sounding familiar, when was the last time you stepped away from your routine for just a momentary break? No, I’m not talking about taking a vacation. I mean doing something simple, but different. Maybe take in a matinee, take a stroll through a park. (Okay, it’s winter, so go to a museum or art exhibit.) Look in your local paper and see what low-key events might be available. Small venue performances don’t usually involve crowds and traffic jams. Try for something simpler – find a spot where you can watch a sunset or go outside in the dark and gaze at the stars. Isn’t this rather trite? Yes, but really, it’s lovely when pink, purple, gold and red mingle in the sky. Glittering stars against a black sky are beautiful too. Okay, it’s winter. Bundle up and have a hot beverage with you or afterwards. If an overcast sky negates those possibilities – think about turning off the television (yes, you can DVR or TIVO) and play a card or board game. If you like to cook, break out a cookbook and select an entire meal to do from the cookbook or go on-line if you have a celebrity chef you like and get the recipes.

If money isn’t an issue, pick a new restaurant that you’ve been meaning to try, or high end hotels frequently have reduced weekend rates. Have a massage  and/or beauty treatment. That might be more complicated than you want to deal with, but it can be a break in your routine.

Something else? See if there is a project looking for volunteers – a number of organizations schedule cleanups or other one-two day projects that need extra hands. I understand not having enough time to get things done – believe me, I do. And I also know that sometimes stepping away – even if just for a short time, can help you catch your breath.

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