My life is a blur. I have a hard time slowing down. Sometimes it’s my body. Usually it’s my mind.

I spend most of my days racing from one urgent project to another (why do I add so many projects to my life in the first place?). When my day “ends” I flop in the wonderful power recliner/loveseat I share with Victor  and watch mindless TV for a couple of hours. Often, I fallCouch Potato asleep in the middle of a tense drama. Thank god for DVR or I’d never see the end of those shows. Then I drag myself to bed and repeat the pattern the next day.

Not a good regimen, frankly. Flopping in front of the TV isn’t really relaxing. It doesn’t nourish me or fill me with peace. It merely allows me to escape into someone else’s problems instead of my own. Bad guys toting sub machine guns don’t chase me down narrow side streets. I’m not on the FBI’s Most Wanted List (that I know of).  Relieved that I don’t have to solve those well-scripted problems (where good usually triumphs over evil), my brain shuts down, but it doesn’t reboot. Even sleep doesn’t restore my soul.

I suspect what I really need is something a little less tension-inducing and a lot more serene. Something that allows me to reconnect to the Real Me. Think meditation or yoga or staring at the night sky. It always sounds like a good idea, but I rarely take the bait. Instead, I find the remote and flop.

This is a clear sign I need some time off from my life. I need more than Downward Dog or Child’s Pose (although I do love Child’s Pose…). I need a break. Far from my office, my refrigerator, my retreat house and even my dogs. I crave solitude. And where do I get it?

At the beach where I walk the edge of the ocean (especially Emerald Isle). In my garden where I lose myself in caring for plants that respond enthusiastically to my kindness. At a bookstore with no time constraints so I can lose myself in browsing.

Even the thought of those places makes my breathing more measured and relaxed. But it’s not enough. I have to get out there and find myself again. I procrastinate in this exercise for my soul just as I procrastinate about exercise for my body. And yet, when I get there…when the ocean waves tease my bare toes … when the weeds disappear one by one from the garden…when I settle into a comfy chair engrossed in a new novel, I return to myself. I know who I am to my very core.

That’s a lovely moment of alignment, one I plan to seek out more often. All I have to do is get off the couch! So if you’ll excuse me, I’m late for a date with a few green bean plants.

Where do you recharge and renew? Do you take care of YOU regularly or do you forget that you are the most important person in your life? Let me hear from you