A day of letting go of all of your “shoulds”, and letting in the things that feel good.

Living in NYC and keeping up with the “hustle” means starting my day at 7am with emails, squeezing in time with friends during a run, waiting for phantom trains on subway platforms, clocking in a full shift at work, helping build content for a startup, running to an audition, and so on… somewhere along the way, doing something as simple as texting a friend back became an energy suck, sleepovers with my S.O. became difficult to feel fully present for, and I fell victim to not being able to put love into my food.

I’m lucky enough to love my work and how I spend my time, but sometimes all of it (I’m sure you don’t need me to tell you) takes a toll…some days, a five-minute meditation and wholesome meal just don’t do the trick. Enter, my simple solution to maintain sanity in this hectic environment: no shoulds days.

 

What is it?

A no shoulds day means waking up in the morning without setting an alarm and without setting a schedule – I may not go to the gym, but may if the mood strikes, I may order food in, but may make a three course meal if that’s what feels good. No shoulds days aren’t necessarily about doing nothing, but more about doing what feels good and less of what you have told yourself you should. Consider it an exercise in thoughtful procrastination; building a day from scratch. On my last no should’s day I stayed in bed far into the morning, cuddled my S.O., took myself out to dinner, and went back to bed at 9pm. The best part? I felt amazing the next day.

 

Can’t do a day?

You do you boss! There’s always an option for a no shoulds morning or night. Shut the phone off, and do something that makes you happy.

 

But they need me?

I make it clear that I’m away from “the office” (err, my kitchen table) for the next day and I’ll get back to them first thing the following morning.

 

Just because the city never sleeps doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t either…all of the time. After “no shoulds” days I come back feeling so much more energized and ready to take part in every part of my to-do list, with gumption. While the concrete jungle can be harsh and cranky, it’s finding the softness and balance in daily life that makes living here sustainable and so ‘effing exciting.

 

Rigel Harris photographed by Camilla Marie Dahl in her Brooklyn bed

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