All is calm. Or maybe it isn’t.

January 29, 2016


No one turns a phrase like the Dowager Countess, don’t you agree?

I look around me at the frenetic lives so many are living–including me, and here’s what I’m thinking: Peace and quiet get a bad rap but the truth is, they aren’t so bad.  In fact, they are a reward.

At this age, I’ve earned some peace and quiet.  I deserve a life in which all is calm. In which I have time to meditate, reflect, read, relax.

So why is it that I fill my hours, days and weeks with things to do?

Is it a bad habit left over from the days of my very busy career?

Is it part of the work ethic my parents instilled in me?

Do I feel guilty that I’m no longer making significant money?

And an even better question: why don’t I reserve more quiet time in my life?

Why is it the first thing to fall by the wayside in my day?

Why, indeed.

Maybe it’s time for me to take a page from the Dowager Countess’ book and ration my excitement.

Maybe it’s time for me to enjoy the fruits of our labors.

Can I do it?

I wonder.

How about you, is this an issue for you?

31 comments on “All is calm. Or maybe it isn’t.
  1. Mellie says:

    Great read over my morning coffee when I take my little slice of solitude before everyone else wakes up. I think some of us need to give ourselves permission to chill out-myself included. Thanks for making me think. The Duchess Mellie

  2. HI Carol, I agree with Mellie, and you, (and The Dowager Countess!), we could all use more quiet in our day…I think less technology would be helpful…to unplug every now and then. But then that is easier said than done. What if the Hospice R.N. who is caring for Dad-In-Law needs me? I am the first call. Or what if “someone” needs me?” I think it may stem from our earlier days…a habit left over from busy work/parenting days. Thanks for pushing me to ponder this and then, hopefully do something about it! My latest post includes some lessons from a ninety-year-old. WE can learn so much from those older than us! Have a great weekend, and let’s include some quiet in it.

  3. I think it’s something in life that we midlifers need to re-learn. We have always been all things to all people and we feel guilty making it about “me”. I think we’re getting better at it but finding time just for ourselves can still be a challenge.

  4. Helene Cohen Bludman says:

    I find that the older I get, the more I crave quiet times — alone times. If I don’t get my space I get anxious and cranky.

  5. I could definitely use more quiet in my day and have been making an effort to put it into my day. I find it so soothing.

  6. Oh my! Sounds just like me. I fill my days up with work and when I am done with work I fill it up with more work. I think it is for all the reasons you listed above. Good luck and if you figure it out let me know.

  7. Carol Graham says:

    The busier I am, the happier I am. I’ll have time for quiet when I’m dead. But I also understand the need for time to reflect or just be alone and never deny myself if the need arises.

  8. I made an appointment to sit in an infrared sauna last night for 30 minutes. I lasted 7. Yes, this is an issue!

  9. I try to make out time for quiet, contemplative moments.

  10. I want downtime when I’m busy, then when I have it, I find myself making lists of things I “need” to get done. I have gotten better about not over scheduling, however. And when there’s a good book at hand, I can chill out quite easily.

  11. Lee Gaitan says:

    Oh, yes, I can’t believe how much I need a balance of high and low energy activities in my life. I can’t believe how I’ve grown to not only be content with less “doing” but actually appreciate and crave it. And I always love me some Countess!

  12. andrea says:

    learning to have a quiet time with the Lord every day – with my Bible…

  13. Joy says:

    I crave peace and quiet all the time, especially one that’s internal. Sometimes I find that the more I need distraction from internal turmoil, the more I crave external busyness. This is why my closets and pantry are in a perpetual state of organization, haha!

  14. Mary says:

    I’m trying, but I’m not succeeding very well!

  15. Carolann says:

    I think relaxation is a bit overrated. Don’t get me wrong. I love to relax but in the late hours of the evening when I can grab a snack, hop in bed, watch some TV, read, zen out…stuff like that. During the day, I’m hopping busy all the time. It can be with chores, blogging, crafting – you name it but one thing is certain, I’m always busy. So yes, while I love the Dowager Countess and her snarky repartee – I think I’ll take excitement where ever I find it! There will be enough relaxing when I’m dust!

  16. I’m learning to make more quiet time and enjoying it, Carol. I think the trick is to tell ourselves that the world will go on happily without our frenetic activities.

  17. I so rarely have any quiet time in my day. I would love to have more, but don’t see how that is going to happen anytime soon!

  18. Jennifer says:

    The morning is my quiet time. I get up before my husband in order to enjoy it. When I was growing up, I would get up before my brothers so I could enjoy the quite as well.

  19. OneDizzyBee says:

    Quiet time? What is this ‘quiet time’ of which you speak? I have heard tell of it, and once, I think I tried to have some of it…I ran a lovely bath, put on some lovely music, filled the water with something that smelled heavenly, sunk myself into the bubbles… And proceeded to make a list in my head of all the things I could have been doing while “wasting” time in the bath! Sigh.

  20. Shantala says:

    This is something that I struggle with too. Quiet time/Me Time/Sleep – all important things, but they are the first to get cut off from my list when I am dealing with a time crunch. Sigh.

  21. Great post, Carol. You have all the rights to enjoy your life !!!

  22. I always struggle to find some alone time. I really need to work on this.

  23. I don’t even get alone time in the bathroom.

  24. Donna says:

    Because I don’t have any alone time I crave it. And lately I have been a bit unhappy at my inability to have it. But with my husband always here, children coming and going through the house all the time…it never occurs. But this morning, my husband had an early morning church meeting, no one else is awake and I am here…alone. It is a feeling of peace I love. I don’t need it endlessly, but I crave it.

  25. I still have four young children at home, so I don’t have to go hunting for things to do! However, I definitely agree that down time, quiet time, time with just your thoughts, is good for all of us.

    Thanks for sharing with us at The Blogger’s Pit Stop.
    – Marie, Blogger’s Pit Stop crew

  26. Myke Todd says:

    Rock singers want to act. Actors want to sing.

    Busy people want some time off. People with time on their hands look for something to do.

    All this is human nature, and actually, makes perfect sense.

    I have had a lazy weekend, but am now looking forward to work on a Monday morning.

  27. Esha says:

    Lovely post! I love solitude too and feel that the chaos that comes from juggling too many things adds value to my quiet moments. I enjoy both kinds of days…the crazy, unpredictable moments makes me look forward to the quiet ones even more, but I’d still need more of both! 😀

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