So this past Saturday, I did something I’ve wanted to do for a long time. Something that I’ve talked about for months! I stayed in my pajamas, grabbed some healthy snacks, parked my butt on the sofa, and binged on Netflix all day. And I mean ALL DAY…starting from 5 am til about 9 pm.
The next morning, I woke up feeling guilty and exhausted. The to-do list rolled through my mind on a continuous loop and I sat there at the edge of my bed…overwhelmed. There was laundry piled up, dusting and vacuuming to do, and a load of errands still left to run. Basically, I kicked myself all morning for being a lazy slug for one measly day.
I went to church later that morning and whined to a friend about my complete day of nonsensical indulging. He reminded me of the non-stop schedule he had by saying, “Oh my god, I cannot wait til I can have that day in just my pajamas! It sounds wonderful!” Did he not hear me? There was still laundry…blah, blah, blah. I’m sure he saw the look of concern on my face because then he said, “When was the last time you took some downtime from EVERYTHING?” I couldn’t remember. And then he said, “There is nothing to feel guilty about AT ALL. The stuff will still get done, right?” Yes…of course it will. Then it made sense. I had “vacation shamed” myself! Ha! There was no deadline on household chores! And by the way, they all got done later that day. No rush. I just let go of the feeling of guilt for indulging in a day of complete nothingness.
Fortunately, I’ve not been vacation shamed at my job. As a matter of fact, I am encouraged to take my days off! But that’s not true for everybody and I know it stings! According to a new survey, 48% of us have been shamed by a co-worker for taking vacation days, because the co-worker claims it makes their job harder, but perhaps they are just plain jealous! How can you enjoy what’s yours if you are made to feel guilty in one way or another? My advice, (which I TOO have to remind myself) is to completely let go of the unnecessary negative feelings attached and enjoy your downtime! Recharge! It’s HEALTHY! Easier said than done, I know. But if you keep reminding yourself that there is absolutely no reason to feel shamed for self care, it will definitely help put an end to vacation shaming! – KW