In a day and age of hustle culture, there is an underrated value in doing nothing at all. Value in giving your brain a rest and accomplishing nothing. I once chided myself for spending three hours scrolling TikTok. But then I realized it was at the end of a very busy work week with things outside of work going on as well. My brain needed a break.
But too much of a good thing can be bad. And lately, I feel like I’ve been giving my brain too much of a break, and I’m starting to get restless. Of course, life getting in the way has a lot to do with that. And you can’t help it when roadblocks keep popping up.
I had a trip planned to the Gulf Coast for Thanksgiving. I was going to drive to Sea Rim State Park in Texas. Sea Rim State Park is almost on the Louisiana state line below Beaumont, Texas, and is where the marsh meets the sea. I am a big fan of saltwater marshes. The park has an extensive water trail with great wildlife. And I was really looking forward to sitting on the beach and reading my book.
I bought a new beach mat and chair. I was ready to go hard on the paddle trail and lounge on the beach. It was going to be the perfect minibreak.
But then my dog got sick, and I didn’t want to leave her. And how relaxing would it really be to sit on the beach and read my book while worrying about my pup anyway? So I canceled the trip. Sea Rim State Park will be there another time, but I’m not sure how much time I have left with my dog.
But that also gave me four days off of work to just sit at home. And with terrible weather, it didn’t allow any adventuring. I also was reluctant to leave my dog behind.
Now, I love to read. And if you give me a cold rainy day, a cup of coffee, and a book, I’m good to go. But four days is a bit much. I get a little bit of cabin fever by then and start going stir-crazy. This was a little too much downtime.
So I did what all adventure-loving people would do when they are stuck at home – I organized my gear closet. Having learned my lesson on properly storing tents via dry-rotted seam tape, I made way for better storage. I now have my tents hung so they are not sitting compressed for months on end. Everything is easy to see and gather when needed.
One thing about driving long distances by yourself is that it forces you to slow your mind and meditate, all while still accomplishing a goal. The same is true for solo hiking. Being alone in nature is a great place to meditate and clear your mind. But while hiking, especially if it’s a hard hike, you are accomplishing something.
There is value in taking a weekend to lounge on the couch and watch Netflix, but there also can be too much of a good thing. I had been lounging, resting up for my trip to the Gulf Coast. And when that didn’t happen, a four-day weekend at home was too much of a good thing.