It translates to the sweetness of doing nothing. It’s a line from Eat, Pray, Love and a very real concept in Italy. Not so much a concept in either the United States, or my own household...at least not for me. That’s right. Despite my being the only Italian-American in my household, I am sorry to say that I am the only one who doesn’t indulge in “dolce far niente.”
My husband? Great with this concept. He is content to float in the pool, lay on the couch, or kick around about town just taking a drive. My dogs? Absolutely the masters of this sweetness of doing nothing, as it is mostly what they do. Even my cat and my chickens are good at this.
Me? As I write this is nine o’clock on Saturday evening and I am restless just laying here “enjoying” myself. I have such a hard time enjoying this type of sweetness. What is my freaking problem? I should be relishing these moments of nothingness and embracing them more fully and instead I want to fill those spaces with something productive....
I wonder if this notion in me is partly a tactic to distract myself from whatever else is going on that has the potential to stress me out. Some people drink vodka, and perhaps I just work instead. Or clean. Or pin boards on Pinterest. Or reorganize something. (you get he picture, right?)
Well, I turned 28 a couple weeks ago, and as one of my good friends reminded me just yesterday, that means I am “almost 30.” I also completed a 21-day meditative challenge a few days back. During this challenge, I had a break-through about living my adventure. That is, I want to embody the adventuress spirit that I know dwells within me. Instead of really being that adventurer, my first inclination is to be a control freak. I want to have more dolce far niente because I truly believe that it will make me happier, more fulfilled, and ultimately more present with others.
Sometimes that means staying still long enough to see those places where adventure peaks through...it means tasting the sweetness of life by *ah-ha* doing nothing!
So how about you...are you good at really enjoying those moments where you deliberately take time to do nothing? Are you able to hit pause and realize that life is about more than control, scheduling, work, school, and whatever the heck else we prioritize in front of the things that really matter?
How can we all cultivate a little more sweetness of doing nothing--where is your sweet spot? Mine? My sweet spot is laying in bed with my husband in the morning....before anything else has happened and the sun is just coming up--or better yet, on a cloudy day when neither of us in a rush. It’s also when I am just sitting, observing my chickens in the yard and watching them peck and forage for bugs and blades of grass. Another is when I am cooking something I just can’t wait to eat. Or when I’m meditating and not distracted by anything or anyone...when it’s just me and there is a deep sense of unity with the universe.
When I started to think about the sweet spots, there are an endless supply to choose from. The point of it is to CHOOSE THEM! Choose more sweetness, more quiet, and more time to simply be in a moment.
That is all. For today, anyway.