There is a palpable intensity this week to “be healthy.” It almost seems like being well is a civic duty. Nobody ever WANTS to be sick. But, right now, it feels like the weight of our communities are on our shoulders. After all, if I get sick, it’s going to have a negative ripple effect on all my family, friends, neighbors and business owners living around me.
I could be responsible for the shut down of our entire town, Rachel! BE WELL!
It’s super intense.
Because of this intensity, I tend to charge myself with the job of “getting serious.” I get laser focused on “the problem,” and pour all my energy into fighting it.
What’s the problem this week? Sickness!
What can I do to fight it? Clean the house from top to bottom, Helicopter Mom over the preventative care of my husband and children, be intensely proactive about getting ahead of my work load and laundry load. I’m keeping my eyes on the groceries, the gas tank, and how much hand sanitizer my family is lathered in at any given moment. My normal operating hours are 5 am to 9:30 pm. But this week, I’ve been staying open until midnight in response to community intensity.
It’s great to take things seriously and follow the recommendations of medical professionals. But, I forgot to put “celebration” and “enjoyment” on my things to do list.
If you’re anything like me, the thought of taking time to celebrate and experience enjoyment seems almost irresponsible.
Celebration and enjoyment can resume after all this is over.
Actually, they can’t. Believe it or not, celebration and enjoyment are critical staff. We cannot be healthy spiritually, mentally, emotionally, or physically without them. Celebration and enjoyment produce joy. And, joy is the fuel we need to reach the finish line of an endeavor with a good attitude.
Joy powers us. Nehemiah 8:10 says, “The joy of the Lord is your strength.” Without joy, you will experience weakness.
When there’s no joy in the tank, we look for alternate fuel to mimic joy. That’s exactly what I did when I reached for the Costco-sized jar of mixed nuts sitting on the counter at work. I ate a lot of nuts, but I didn’t satiate my joy tank. Rather, I filled up on guilt.
That’s not good. We’re not built to run on guilt. Our natural response to guilt is to punish ourselves. We seal off our access to celebration and enjoyment. And, in doing so, we actually propel ourselves into a deeper state of imbalance.
Thankfully, I caught the symptoms of imbalance early. I plan on treating them with a healthy dose of fun today. If I don’t, I know what the outcome will be…I’ll make myself sick. And, I DEFINITELY don’t want that.
More than ever, staying healthy is our gift to the world. So, let’s all do our part: stick to our eating plan, stay home as much as we can, wash our hands, and schedule heaping doses of celebration and enjoyment!