Ever seen that skit from Portlandia? This one. That's what my brain is like by Friday and sometimes even by Wednesday - a jumble of notes, ideas, and reminders for the entire week or more. When my head is filled with so many competing thoughts, I can't make decisions. I become paralyzed. Even with a million things to do, I can't seem to focus on just one. It's time to hit reset - to instantly clear my head - time to close all of my browser tabs, shut the computer, and find a great spot outside to sit and catch the sunset. It's that simple. And refreshing.
Two weeks ago, Brian and I along with a couple of friends motored our sailboat from Hilton Head Island to Savannah. It was a four-hour trip complete with a beautiful sunrise, lots of sunshine, temperatures in the high 50s, golden marshland, rippling water, and dolphins surfing in our wake. Spoiled? Yes. Now that our boat is closer, we can visit her whenever we want, and now that the outside is mostly finished, we can sit on deck and enjoy the view. This is my new reset spot. This beautiful place is where I can go to instantly clear my head, and it makes a huge difference in my productivity.
On Wednesday, my brain was on overload, so what did I do? I went to my perfect spot and watched the sunset. This week I've watched the sunset three times and there will probably be a few more before the week is over. The sky is amazing, beautiful, and expansive, so it puts life back into perspective for me. By getting outside, I'm filling my lungs with fresh air; my ears are tuning into the natural sounds of life, and I'm escaping from my computer and all of my self-imposed deadlines. It instantly shakes me out of that little place inside my head and into a big world. I am not the center of the universe!
We all need tricks to break away from "it all." While it's great to focus on accomplishing our goals, we need a clear head to be at our best. So the next time your brain is tired or you're having trouble focusing, pencil in a tiny bit of time for yourself, find the perfect spot, and get there a little before sunset. Even if you only have ten minutes, and even if you don't have a sailboat or a waterfront view, it will be worth it. I promise. You are not carrying the world - the world is carrying you, so don't forget to sit back and enjoy the view.