This morning as I wrote my morning pages my world just split open with a new idea. The idea itself isn’t new but the concept is a fresh one and I’d love to share it with you. What if, like undressing at the end of a long day, we took off all of our obligations. What if we simply stepped out of our roles – even the prospect blew my hair back. The thought left me feeling expansive, lighter, free. So let me walk you through the process.
Imagine what life might be like if you removed all of the responsibilities and obligations you have for caring for others, including yourself. What if you took a break from the roles you hold? How much space and time might that open up for you. What might you do with that expansiveness?
Let’s start with taking off our roles – imagine you had staff to manage your household. Someone to clean, cook, and manage your home. No need to discuss landscaping or grocery shop, no need to tidy or fold or dust. All of these duties are no longer yours.
Imagine you had a caregiver to manage the needs of your family. Someone who juggled school schedules, uniforms and dress codes, field trip permission forms, pick up and drop off. Someone who shuttled your children to their various engagements, practices and lessons. You still get to be their parent who loves and supports them but the rest is gone. All of their squabbles and the daily management of whereabouts and requirements are all gone.
Imagine your social schedule is managed by a personal assistant. They handle birthday presents for your parents, RSVP’s and calendar management, scheduling and orchestrating the business of day to day life. This person assures that your schedule brings you optimal joy and success. Never does a birthday go unacknowledged or a thank you note get lost in the mail. You are the first to RSVP to weddings, baptisms, and showers. You are able to be the friend and family member you have always wanted to be because the labor of this work is no longer on your shoulders alone.
Imagine you are free of responsibilities for employment or financial gain or wellbeing. Wealth is plentiful and you no longer need consider the cost or the investment. You don’t need to analyze health plans or become an overnight expert on finances to complete your taxes. These tasks are managed to your optimal benefit and success. You no longer need take the time to micromanage your finances or your plans in order to create cost savings or produce profit. You are free.
Now, if this imaginative state is not enough to blow your socks off, imagine what would you do with all of the time you have left. If instead of buzzing from one duty or task to the next you could simply, be, exist, experience. Now, what would you do? What might you have time for? Where might your focus be? What would you and your partner talk about over dinner if logistics were no longer on the table? Could you talk about joy? Passion projects? Would you still complain or nitpick? Of course, there will always be challenges but the joy – the very real joy is in the imagining. It is in the wondering – what might you do with yourself, with your time? How might you live?
Would you go to Wimbledon? Take painting classes? Try out for a play? What adventures would you go on? Would you swim under a waterfall in Fiji? Would you fold your children’s laundry or write love letters to your spouse – not because you “had to,” but as a labor of love? What would your life look like if it wasn’t full of these tasks and to do items that take up so much of our days?
For instance, I once read a post on Instagram from a cellist who was hired by Richard Branson to play for him. She performed while he played tennis with a former head of state. She was flown to his private island, housed, fed, and compensated for playing music while he played tennis. The idea just blew my mind. He could have played cello music on a sound system but instead he chose this indulgence for his afternoon’s delight and that of his guest. When you think about it, there are heads of state, dignitaries, business owners, and leaders across the globe who have access to staff, personal or professional, to remove these obstacles from their daily lives. It is this assistance that gives them the freedom to focus on passion projects, work, and goals.
This lifestyle exists, it is not impossible. It may be a far reach for many of us – but even the small act of imagining powerful. It allows us to consider what we might do if we had that access, those resources. If we had the ability to focus solely on what we most want to do and everyone around us conspired for our success – I wonder who we might shape the world differently? How would you change the world? And I mean this in a very small way – none of us is responsible to reshape history on our own. But how would you change your world? How would you shift your attention and what would you do with limitless time, energy, and resources?