“You know what I need? I need one of those secret bonus days you talked about inventing.”
It had been so long that I had forgotten my radical idea/invention, time altering notion.
(Image Courtesy of Western Michigan University Registrar’s Office)
The idea is a simple one, but does require altering the space-time continuum. Everyone, and I mean everyone gets a Super Secret Bonus Day each week. It appears on your calendar. It can be between Wednesday and Thursday, after a hard Monday, anywhere you like, it is up to you.
The Super Secret Bonus Day is yours. You get to do those things that you never get to do for yourself given your busy almost crazy paced life. Read that book, go to the beach and lay in the sun, write, paint, sing, or just rest. There is a catch.
No one else knows you are gone during your Super Secret Bonus Day. You may have spent that day at the beach between Monday and Tuesday, but no one noticed. For them, it was business as usual, but you are surprisingly tan and relaxed. There are no logistics that you have to work out to have your day, no child care, no guilt for wanting to spend some time alone away from your significant other, kids, parents, co-workers, boss or friends. It is your day and everyone gets one.
As we talked a little more at breakfast, I began to wonder. Why is this concept so attractive, yet so unattainable? (Besides the whole altering time thing…) We are so busy, so stretched, and so scheduled that there is no time left for us. We all have these lists of things we would like to do, but time slips away and they become a somewhat resentful reminder that there was no time to accomplish these things.
Given that a few years have passed and I have been unable to alter the course of time (despite a few good attempts), I have a new idea. We can still have our Super Secret Bonus Day, but it may look a little different. Everyone can have a Super Secret Bonus Day but the reality is you need to schedule it on your calendar. Once a week may be too much to start, so I am going to try for once a month (for some of you, once a quarter may be more realistic).
Here is my plan. I am going to put my Super Secret Bonus Day on the calendar once a month. A day for just me to ponder life, read, and write a little while sipping coffee in some amazing local coffee shop, eating a lunch without the rushing of managing young kids, and quiet time in a library or art gallery. What will your Super Secret Bonus Day include?
A few Super Secret Bonus Day Guidelines (no rules, this is supposed to be fun right?)
1. It is your day.
2. Do something you like that is not work related.
3. Come to some agreement with those within your sphere that you each get a day, and let it happen without making the other person feel guilty for taking their day.
4. Help someone else take their day (watch their kids, encourage them to schedule it).
5. Have fun!