Some time ago I was walking in a maze of our corporate campus looking for a conference room for my next meeting and the new marketing campaign flyer caught my eye. It said, Thinkers are great, but only the doers change the world. It made me stop and stare and think, Whoa! Is something wrong with this message? I know that we live in the culture that values setting goals and achieving them. There are so many books written and so many gadgets released that promise us that we can be ever more productive with our time, so we can accomplish more. In all the rush to doing, I personally find it difficult to stop and just… be. I also find it difficult to let my daughter just be. Just the other day she was sitting on the grass outside with sort of concerned expression on her face. I asked her what’s wrong, and she said, Nothing! I am just thinking about something, that’s all! She often has those moments of disappearing, being lost in the world of her own, and I want to encourage those precious moments of doing nothing, just being, just thinking her own thoughts and making up her own stories and being herself. There is only one thing that she needs for it – time to herself. And that’s why we decided not to sign her up for any additional classes this fall. She already spends enough time outside of house – in preschool and on play dates. We didn’t want to fill her remaining time with even more “fixed appointments”, and we positively didn’t want to do any weekend classes. Even though we are a secular family, weekends are sacred to us as the time to hang out together, to go on road trips, and to take it easy. I expect that one day she will have some extra activity, but right now I want to give her a gift of being, not of doing. I want her to be where she loves being best – in her own house with her own family having adventures or quiet time together.
How do you balance being and doing in your family?