We all go through the same, mundane routines day in and day out – commuting to and from work, replying inane emails, cursing people who sent said emails, grocery shopping, paying bills, etc. Sounds all too familiar, doesn’t it? All this has led me to wonder – how would it feel like to not do any of those things for an entire day? No plans, no obligations, no appointments, no emails (those darn emails!!). Just you and the next 24 hours. What would you do?
I decided to give that idea a go when I finally got my island getaway in Maldives. I was lucky enough to stay in a nice apartment all by myself for two whole days. So, instead of heading out to check out the rest of the town, and in this case Hulhumalé, I thought it best to not make any plans of the sort. There was not even a hint of an itinerary. After putting my luggage in my room, I actually took a moment to ask myself “Right. What next?” I went straight to the balcony, looked out at the beach and headed out. Ok, you must be thinking “How is THIS considered doing nothing?” Well, I’ll get to that. Just bear with me here.
After taking the mandatory “feet in sand” and “feet on deck chair” pictures, I walked further up the beach. I smiled at a couple who were clearly wondering why I was walking into their special beach love-fest photo shoot, so I thought it best to turn back towards the apartment. I didn’t want to risk walking all over artwork of love; there was a big heart with their initials “R+S” in it. Also, it was getting way too hot and I forgot to put on my sunblock. Tsk.
Here’s a little summary of what I ended up doing next.
- Naturally, I snoozed.
- Then, I woke up and munched on some snacks.
- And then, I watched part of The Lion King for what seemed like the 276th time. Still enjoyable after all these years, I must say.
- After which, I sat out at the balcony and decided to write.
- I continued to sit out at the balcony and read Mindy Kaling’s brilliant “Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns)”. Read it if you haven’t already! Seriously, it is “I want to be Mindy’s friend” good!
- After awhile, I went back down to the beach, plonked myself and Mindy on the deck chair and laughed out loud with her (yes, I am still hoping we can be friends).
- An hour in, I went back to the apartment after some local boys came about wondering what tattoos I had. To be fair, they were really polite and nice. I have no idea why I didn’t sit around and chat with them. I’ll just blame it on my new friend Mindy.
- Then, I sent the pictures I took earlier to my friends who I’m pretty sure hated me at the time. I suspect some of them still hate me.
- With no sense of guilt whatsoever, I snoozed again.
- Finally, I had ramen noodles in front of the tele. And went to bed for some really good sleep.
Day of doing nothing done!!
You may think all this is NOT nothing, but I beg to differ. These are things that I wish I could do on most days, but am mostly stuck with the aforementioned obligations and office work. So, to finally getting around to not planning anything; well, that was very liberating. It was nice to not adhere to any pre-planned itinerary as well – something that I would normally do on other trips. If I felt like snoozing, I snoozed and if I wanted to gobble up half a box of chocolates, I did just that. No regrets!
Yes, I am aware that you could easily do these things from the comfort of your own home and may seem a complete waste when on holiday in a paradise like Maldives. That is exactly what I used to think when a close friend of mine mentioned she used to lounge in bed the whole day when on holiday. I was shocked at the time, but not anymore. I completely understand why she did what she did. Or more like, didn’t do.
To me, doing nothing isn’t just about sitting around staring at the four walls (and even if you did just that, I will not judge you. I promise!). It means doing whatever we want, whenever we want, with no obligations to meet any deadlines or complete any list. You could stay in bed, catch up on your favourite shows or books, eat 5 pizzas or more. The possibilities are endless! I believe now, more than ever, that there there is nothing wrong with that. At the end of the day, it is entirely up to you to do whatever it is you want to do; to be free to choose how you would like to spend a day doing nothing.
Now, let me ask you again. If you had an entire day to yourself, what would you do?