When the power goes off, that’s when you realise just how much of what we do depends on it. In Lancaster’s recent power cut, it was fascinating to see how everything was forced to grind to a halt. Our jam-packed diary had to all be rearranged. Without lights and computers, other than tidy the studio; there was little else we could do so I sent everyone home.
Everyone is Out
In the town centre every other door had a hand written note on it apologising for their closure. The Barclays bankers had brought out their office chairs for a picnic in the street. Everyone was out and the market was bustling. Cash became king and the pace of life slowed for a moment.
The first client I had to turn away told me the market was selling amazing cherries, so I popped to have a look and bumped into a friend. Today there was time to sit and chat and enjoy the busker for a moment.
The Music Room Café was oddly the only place that seemed to have power. It was like a beaming oasis among all the dark stores. I thought about the book I had on the go at home and how I could go and have a read without feeling guilty, but the idea of a quiet coffee won me over.
Time to Think
So I sat, Americano in hand while the sun fought its way through the cloud and let my mind wander.
In our house we have made Monday and Tuesday technology free days. We want to make sure our children have time to play. We want them to hear their own thoughts without a TV or computer blasting into their headspace. I’ve thought for a long time that it is important to learn to just be and that it is even important to be bored.
I want my children to be able to go places and be on their own without the crutch of a phone. As they grow up I want them to be able to engage with the here and now and know when to switch off from the torrent of conversations that social media puts at our fingertips.
And on this forced holiday, I began to think that I too, need to take a leaf out of this book. Perhaps we all do. Unplug ourselves and give ourselves time to be, and remember who we are. To take time to decide what we think about the barrage of information we are bombarded with everyday. And perhaps to just take ourselves away from the barrage completely – what will enrich our lives more?
Let’s take time to listen to the busker and smell the coffee. We shouldn’t need a power cut to people watch and just be. I challenge you to take time out for yourself – have five minutes a day for the next week!
Now the power is back and we can continue moving forward, but thank you for that impromptu holiday Power People. Thank you for the head space, it was pretty powerful!