I Had the Most Fun!

I’m Qatana and I’m a workaholic.  From earliest childhood I was deeply entrained to believe in the importance of work.  Work defines your identity.  Work justifies your existence.  If you’re not working, you’re not worthwhile.

Recently, my Divine Nature has been pointing me in the direction of joy.  My Inner Wisdom has been reprogramming me to honor the value of fun.  It tells me, “Do what gives you joy.”

Now, don’t get me wrong.  When you love your work, it can be filled with joy.  Mine often is. As I bear loving witness to my clients’ magnificent imagery work, I often marvel at my incredible good fortune to be paid for the privilege of doing what I do.

The problem comes when it’s hard to let go of work and just relax or have fun.  When you’re a workaholic, it feels like if there’s work to be done, the fun needs to wait.  It’s sort of like the way we’ve been brought up to eat all our vegetables before we even think about dessert.  This has become more and more of a problem on vacation.Jumping the waves I Had the Most Fun!

For over twenty years we’ve been renting a vacation home at the beach. In the old days, I’d go to the phone booth at the general store a couple of times a day to make a few phone calls, check my messages and schedule sessions.  The rest of the time, I’d play.

With internet and cell phones, the boundaries between work and vacation have become more and more blurred.  The convenience of a cell phone means spending more time on the phone.  Attending to the internet means less relaxing on the beach or playing in the waves.  Once I started bringing my laptop along, the difference between vacation and my ‘normal’ life seemed to disappear.

When I look back at those lost years at the beach I remember feeling guilty when I was playing in the waves, thinking about all the work that wasn’t getting done.  When I was sitting in the house whittling away at my massive ‘to do’ list, I felt resentful, because I wanted to be out relaxing on the sand.  What a no-win situation! What a recipe for misery!

This year I resolved to listen to my Divine Nature and go for joy.  What a difference it made!!!  I had more fun and enjoyed myself more than I had in years.

This year, before committing to doing anything, I’d ask myself, “What would give you the most joy in this moment?”  Then I’d let myself be guided by the answer.  I worked some of the time, but I gave walks on the beach, reading for enjoyment and relaxation the honor and respect they deserve. I had a great time.

Now I know that life is not just one big joy-fest.  There are plenty of times when you have to do what you have to do, whether you enjoy it or not and what you have to do may not be fun.

Walking on the beach I Had the Most Fun!But in those times when you do have discretion, allow yourself to be guided by the question “What would give me the most joy in this moment?”  The first step is to be aware that you have a choice.  The next step is to let yourself be guided toward enjoyment when you take the time to ask the question.

I loved my beach vacation this year – for the first time in years.  When I look back on those earlier years it’s hard to remember what I might have accomplished in those hours I spent working that could compare in value to the wonderful time I had, having fun.

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What You Can Do

1.  Give yourself permission to enjoy your life by valuing the time you spend having fun or relaxing at least as much as the time you’re busy accomplishing the things we’ve been taught are more important.

2.  Make a list of the things you enjoy.  Add to your list those things you think you might enjoy but have never given yourself the chance to try.  Then, give yourself permission to engage in fun or relaxing activities on a regular basis.

3.  Notice the difference in your life when you create a better balance between work and fun!

 

 

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2 Responses to I Had the Most Fun!

  • This is so great, Qatana. The more I gain a sense of my true self beyond my work, the easier it is to just be, and to let my work be, only engaging in it when I am actually doing it. I recently bought a new mountain bike and when I am on it I am completely free from work and totally happy. There is work happy and there is happy for no reason happy. More and more I am enjoying the latter. Thank you, dear friend. Love the photos!

  • I can just hear the joy in your reporting of the joy…and see it in the photos! You and I are so often on parallel paths…and I’ve learned so much from you. You nailed me with “When you’re a workaholic, it feels like if there’s work to be done, the fun needs to wait. It’s sort of like the way we’ve been brought up to eat all our vegetables before we even think about dessert.” As hard as I try to live in the moment and choose joy, there are those times when I choose work and postpone play…and in hindsight playing first would have made the work easier. As always, your wise insight is appreciated.

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