Lying Dormant

I often feel pressure to do stuff. I want to produce. Make the most of the time. Accomplish things.

I makes lists. Lots of them.

I make lists of things I want to do someday/maybe. That’s the name of the list: “Someday/Maybe.”

I also make lists of books I want to read, places I want to go, and restaurants where I want to dine.

In reviewing my lists I find that I do a lot things. Tasks do get completed and marked off. Some are the necessary things. Some are priorities. Others are routine: life maintenance tasks, healthy rhythms, chores that sort of thing.

That means on days when I’m less productive, when my energy wanes, when I’m just flat out tired, I feel like I’m a slug. Fading. Falling out. The word for that is “languishing.” Austin Kleon writes about this feeling, arguing that maybe languishing isn’t the best term. Maybe dormancy fits better.

Kleon writes: “It seems to me that the reason that so many of us feel like we’re languishing is that we are trying to flourish in terrible conditions.”

This doesn’t negate the possibility that we might be languishing. But our bodies, minds, and souls might be telling us, “you need to rest.” “You need to regain your strength.” “You need to be outwardly idle for a little while, solidify some inner growth.”

Then later, when the time comes, burst forth.