The idea of “getting many things done ASAP” can add unnecessary pressure with many feeling the need to continuously push themselves to be more productive.
But it’s actually okay to schedule “lazy days” and some time out. Stop what you’re doing and pause for a bit, says yoga instructor Stephanie Bovis. Instead of wanting to be “more-something”, focus on one thing and finish it properly. Let that become part of your routine, and you’ll master a new skill without being distracted by other things.
“Because of the pandemic, many people are trying to do as many things as they can with the extra time at home,” Stephanie observes. “While that’s fine, it can become a productivity contest. That itself is stressful on so many levels.”
The 31-year-old adds: “Having ‘lazy days’ on purpose is something that I’ve been doing. I focus on one task for a long period of time, but that doesn’t mean I’m not productive at all.”
And it’s absolutely fine with having nothing on the plate at times.
“The feeling of having nothing to do can suddenly become strange. So people are also taking the moment to pick up a new skill and broaden their knowledge by taking online courses.”
Stephanie points out that people shouldn’t stress themselves out by creating expectations on how this time should be utilised.
An avid traveller, she used to spend a lot of time on social activities and moving around. If she found herself in an idle mode, she’d feel bored and uncomfortable.
But after exploring what she could do to maintain inner peace, Stephanie started teaching yoga four years ago and she credits it with helping her slow down. Now, the certified yoga instructor also conducts virtual classes for her students.
She says: “With fast-paced exercises, you try to do as many repetitions as you can under 30 seconds. That can be stressful for some people. With yoga, you learn how to be patient.
“Holding a pose, or simply getting into the starting position and staying there – it’s already calming and satisfying.”
Stephanie believes that taking long and short breaks in between routines can help people to slow down their pace.
“In a time when many of our jobs become ‘unessential’, we can choose what we decide is essential – and good for our well-being.”
You can attend Stephanoe’s Zoom yoga classes here.
This story was first published on Her World’s June 2020 issue.