Published on Mommy Tracked (http://www.mommytracked.com)

Taking a Time Out .

by Alanna Fincke


Feeling exhausted from a busy week recently, my husband and I decided to cancel an out-of-town weekend trip at the last minute. Here we were on a Thursday night, looking at two entire days with no plans—no playdates, no parties, no pesky errands. Heaven!


With two young children and busy jobs, we couldn’t remember a weekend that wasn’t packed with to-dos and checklists. We felt giddy with delight at our completely free agenda, and made a conscious choice to approach this precious time with open hearts and minds.


After a lazy Saturday morning making pancakes and erecting
an elaborate choo-choo track for our son, we loaded the kids
into the stroller and walked to town. There we ran into our neighbors. Turns out, it was their son’s sixth birthday, so we all decided to go to lunch together. What serendipity! The bliss continued on Sunday, when I skipped my 8:30 a.m. Pilates class and instead snuggled with my one-year-old daughter. Then I took a luxurious two-hour nap. Filled with great family time, unexpected encounters, and much-needed relaxation, it was a rejuvenating couple of days.


This weekend, try to work a little more unscheduled time into your calendar. Experts agree that a routine helps keep our lives running smoothly, but it has its cons, too. All work and no play creates stress, which can contribute to weakened immunity, even heart disease. And research shows that doing something novel or unexpected can actually improve your health—boosting brain power and your mood. In this spring season of renewal and growth, there’s no better time to start making a healthy change in your life.


Although our “free” weekend is now a distant memory, the lesson we learned from it has stayed with us: Remain open to possibilities. In between playdates and Pilates, we can always find pockets of time to leave open to the unexpected. After all, life’s no fun when it’s all about taking care of business. Sometimes, having no plans is the
best plan of all.


For more ideas on how to unplan your life, check out this great article from my magazine body + soul [1].

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