Released On 17th Aug 2021
Jon's Blog: We're all going on a summer holiday
It feels like the summer holiday has taken up more than its usual share of time and energy this year. In some ways that's good – it took very little time last year because we couldn't go anywhere or do anything! In other ways it's been less than ideal, trying to second-guess (along with most newspapers) which government list a country will end up on.
In the end, we've plumped for a good old English seaside holiday like I remember from my childhood (with embarrassing photos from the 80s and 90s to prove it). Hopefully we can paddle in the sea, build sandcastles, look in rock pools and chase seagulls away from our chips, building memories every English child should recognise.
I've also become traditionally fixated on the weather and planning rainy-day activities, another staple of the English seaside holiday experience. We still have a raincoat bought on our last one when 80% of the time it rained so hard you could barely see in front of you – probably the best purchase of that holiday (which was the reason we then went abroad as much as we could!).
Mostly, though, I'm hoping for some time to rest as a family. We've spent far more time together these last 18 months than usual, which has mostly been great (if a little tense at times). But it doesn't feel like we've had much chance to rest, between home schooling, not knowing if we could commit to things, optimistically booking things and then having to completely rearrange them (repeatedly), and the usual run of work, groceries, and so on.
Finding any sort of rest has been one of the greatest challenges of this pandemic for me. It feels as though the few moments that I used to have to myself (perhaps on the train back from work) have been taken away, and what I need to do takes longer and is more complicated. As an introvert I've missed that space to recharge by myself, but it's also about having a sustainable rhythm of rest amidst all the craziness in order to stay healthy and sane.
That's not to suggest that I was a perfectly balanced paragon of activity and rest before the pandemic – far from it! I guess losing the little space I felt that I did have, and having my world shaken up from its status quo, has caused me to reflect afresh on how I can try to ensure that I move forward healthily by trying to rest adequately.
The key thing for me is trying to recognise, and accept, my limitations. I'm learning that I'm a limited and fragile creature, able to do far less than I might wish or like without breaking myself. So the challenge is focusing on those few things that are truly important and that I can do well, letting other things stay undone (or be done by others). And trying to stay true to my "out of office" saying that I'm not around for two weeks!
Jon is the father of two growing boys, and he and his amazing wife work four days a week. They are both lawyers, and Jon has worked in the City for around 15 years as a solicitor in the insurance industry. He is now becoming an expert in home renovation and Splatoon 2.