Remember the book GOOD NIGHT MOON?
Quick refresher: in it, author Margaret Wise Brown gently nudges children from waking towards sleep by simply saying “good night,” to the everyday objects and people in the child’s room.
Transitions…here and there green leaves are showing hints of yellow and orange. The school year has started. Right now the Days of Awe, which for practicing Jews, are the ten days of passage from one year into the next.
Transitions have been so much on my mind that when creating the new installment of Sunny Ideas for a Rainy Day for 2-6 year-olds, I found myself writing about the power of routine to support daily transition times in young children’s lives. And clients too, have been asking for help getting to bed at a decent hour (regularly), re-entering home after work, managing interruptions to their flow, taking time for a non-work during lunch weekday, wondering how to put their work lives to bed at the end of the day – the transitions embedded in everyday life.
Interesting, because by the middle of last week I was fairly wrung out. The Listening From Your Body of Knowledge:For Parents workshop is coming up and after practically downloading the curriculum from my brain, I searched music for the awesome playlist; collaborated with Adman on the brochure (more writing); composed and sent a series of email announcements; rode around White Plains dropping off brochures; and created new contact lists (importing contacts into distribution lists, one by one, not my idea of bliss). This in addition to seeing clients (whom I love – hello clients), blogging, writing, finishing and then announcing the new Sunny Ideas books (see last sentence for emailing, list making tedium ) and well, I haven’t even mentioned the legions of repairmen that have been showing up here at Casa Garfinkel.
So what? Everyone is busy. So true. What I’ve noticed is that part of the exhaustion coming from all this busy-ness is a direct result of forgetting that a stopping place is needed. And, that I need transition support to get to that ending too. I need my own GOOD NIGHT MOve Into Change and my own hello day.
There’s something powerful about setting up routines that truly guide a transition. And, something necessary about consciously participating in the routine instead of going on automatic. I think mindless routine is usually a bad idea. So as an experiment, I’ve been doing this. I’m calling it the Brown Approach to Transitions of BAT ( as in go to BAT) in honor of Margaret Wise (don’t you just love her middle name?) Brown.
- Setting a reasonable time to end – in my case, stop working
- Saying (aloud, if no one’s around) “Time to put the work day to bed”
- Deliberately pick up each item and find the right place for it. Write down what needs to be remembered for tomorrow.
- Saying “Good night Move Into Change”
- Walk away
Obviously, you’ll need to tweak this for your specific transition, but you can see how it’s applicable, yes? And, in case your inner critters are sniping that this is so silly cause you should just be able to just stop working and move on – let them know that this is sophisticated self care. And, as this is an experiment, I will report on my observations (and therefore, have proof). Wanna join me?