The other day, while digging for a Thomas Jefferson quote I vaguely remembered (on government transparency), I stumbled upon one that really resonated with me:

“Determine never to be idle. No person will have occasion to complain of the want of time who never loses any. It is wonderful how much may be done if we are always doing.”

This so perfectly sums up my mindset, especially lately.

Sure, you do need time to be idle, especially in summer. On a sunny summer afternoon, there’s something refreshing and invigorating about lounging in the backyard with a book and a bowl of fresh farmstand cherries.

But Sunday afternoon, around 4 or 5 PM (earlier in the winter, when sunset begins around 3 PM), I don’t want to feel like the weekend was wasted. Weekends are a precious commodity, and I want to make the most of them.

Like it or not, there’s always a list of things to do around the house, from weekly maintenance (cleaning the bathroom, mowing the lawn) to bigger projects (like staining the fence). In the last year, I’ve added regular workouts to my must-do list, and have reaped the benefits.

And there’s real satisfaction in crossing things off the list.

Plus, by staying on top of things, I feel like I’m granted the freedom to kick off for an evening and have fun. Tonight, I planned to mow the lawn, but at the last minute was invited to go listen to a concert in the park. Since everything but the lawn is in good shape, I went, and enjoyed the perfect weather from a blanket on a hillside.

Finding the balance of doing while relaxing is tricky, but when you do, it’s nirvana.


2 responses to “Doing

  1. Even the most mundane of chores can, when finished, lead to a sense of accomplishment when they are inscribed on a list and crossed off when completed!

  2. Pingback: Making It | The Adventures of Elginista

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