Recreated, but mostly accurate, successful conversation I had a few months ago:
Wife: “You want us to do … what?”
Me: (uh oh, not going well): “I know honey, it will take some time to adjust, but …”
Wife: “Honestly sweetheart, you’ve got to be kidding. I don’t have time. We don’t have time. I’m running around everyday already …”
Me: “I know, I know. But, listen. I think this will work. I think we need to do this. It will help us. It will clear our brain, it’ll give our brain fresh air, new neural pathways. I really want to try this …”
Wife: “I don’t know …”
Me: (ohhh …. she’s coming around, the brain thing always works): “Look honey, let’s just give it a try this Sunday.”
Wife: “What’s your plan, exactly?”
Me: We take the whole day, starting from the evening before and just read. That’s it. We read. We don’t go on the computer. We don’t watch the news and we turn off our notifications. We just read books or whatever. It’ll be 24 hours of breathing deep. We can go to the lake or park or just stay home.
Wife: I know you mean well and I know you’re looking out for us but I don’t have time. Sunday we usually get our food ready for the week, get laundry done. When I do have time, I try to keep up with work. I just have tons to do.”
Me: We both love to read. Let’s do this for us. Will you please think about it?
Wife: “This Sunday, I don’t know … Sunday?”
Me (stay silent, don’t talk, don’t talk, let her think, don’t talk, don’t talk …)
Wife: “All right. We’ll give it a try this Sunday.”
Me: (Yahooo!): “It’ll be great! Every Sunday we spend the whole day reading. Read anything you want. We’ll just cuddle up and read and think and rest. All day. You love to read.”
Wife: “I do. I really do. I love to read and I really do love you.”
Me: (time to seal the deal): “Hey, how about reading Jove Belle’s new book? You’ve been wanting to get to it. Sunday’s a perfect time to start.”
Wife: “You know I’ve wanted to read it. Can we take a nap, too?”
For several months, my wife and I have taken Sunday’s off. Being small business owners, it felt like any spare time we could find needed to be spent just keeping the house in order and preparing for what was to come. After the very first Sunday, we both could feel the difference in our bodies and attitudes. We were less tense, more open and relaxed.
We now look forward to Saturday evenings when we begin the process of calming ourselves down, opening our minds and thinking about how Sunday will be relaxing and enjoyable. It’s obvious now, that powering our bodies down for 24 hours is critical to our health, to keeping our relationship healthy, to preparing a clearer path for our work week.
May I suggest to you, that you find ways to power down.