Categorically speaking, I’m the “goody two-shoes” type. If you’ve never met me, just take my word for it because part of my persona is sticking to the truth. I’ve never gotten a traffic ticket, ignored a jury duty summons or neglected to return my library books by the due date. I do have one naughty little secret to share with you, I play hooky. Not only do I believe in escaping what the world expects you to be on a given day, I highly recommend it.
Call it a mental health day, a Ferris Bueller lark or designated “me time,” refer to it by whatever name you choose, but do not deny yourself the occasional escape from your many obligations and duties.
Before you go too far off the beaten path, the good girl side of me must warn you about the rules. Granted, they are my rules, but I hope you will indulge me. First, understand that hooky is a special dispensation you grant the worn-out deserving inner you. It should not be abused or turned into a habit. I allow myself one (okay, maybe two) days per year. My second rule is select the day wisely. Careful planning is necessary so innocent people don’t suffer as a result of your absence.
For example, do not take personal time from work on the day an important project is due, no reneging on playing teacher’s helper the morning of your third grader’s field trip and do not dare cancel out an hour before your mother-in-law’s big birthday bash.
The third and most important rule: do something that gives you great joy. Escape to the beach with a picnic lunch or hide out in the library
and lose yourself in a racy novel. Check into a day spa, go fishing or drive to a nearby city and play tourist. Perhaps you’d rather bolt the doors and keep the world at bay. It’s perfectly fine to stay home and have a movie marathon with Netflix or your favorite DVD’s, watch the daytime soaps if you must, or rearrange your furniture if it would make you happy. The point of this day of freedom is to recharge and refresh.
One last rule: banish any thoughts of guilt from your mind. Hooky is an annual event if you follow my rules. Own it, strategically plan it and make it fun! The sole purpose is to relieve stress and prevent burn-out. It is a day of freedom rich with the significant benefit of blissful peace. Experience the joy and then return to your normal routine a happier you!