creative rest

On Sundays, I take the day off and practice a full day of creative rest. Otherwise known as being lazy.

I do recognize that getting into action is the challenge for some of you but also that there are lots of others like me. It’s not easy, sometimes, for hyper-impassioned creative entrepreneurs to lie low.

I first began this practice after hearing about it from the zen master Thich Nhat Hanh.

Thich Nhat Hanh“A Lazy Day,” says the information sheet at his monastery in Plum Village, France, “is a day for us to be truly with the day, without any scheduled activities…a gift for us to enjoy, in our own time and space. We just let the day unfold naturally, timelessly.”

It’s also a day in which we do other practices–f-r-e-e-writing or inspiration meditation–only if we feel like it. And in any way we like. We may do walking meditation on our own, or with a friend, and walk for longer than usual. We may travel to do a sitting meditation in the forest or by the beach. We do free f-r-e-e-writing, writing without any agenda.

We might like to read but we choose only something light, for pure pleasure. We might like to write a slow letter to someone we love. Or go to a light, uplifting or fun movie.

The idea, says Thay, is that “Sometimes, we may force ourselves too much, creating disharmony within and around us. On this day, we have a chance to balance ourselves.

The effects of the practice are far more powerful than how it feels while doing it. “We may recognize that we may simply need to rest, or that we should practice more diligently.”

A Lazy Day is, most of all, an opportunity to slow down and see deeply what is being created through us.