Monday, August 12, 2013

Monday Mantra: Don't Be A Hermit

mantra is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that is considered capable of "creating transformation".

Every Monday I will post a new thought, idea, or focus for the week. When you need a breather from life, when you need a little inspiration, or when you're about to jump over the conference table and strangle your co-worker, remember the mantra.

Monday Mantra: Don't be a hermit

About 3 hours outside of Phoenix is a little ghost town called Jerome. Long ago, there was a hermit that lived in a cave in the side of the mountain there and, if you were lucky, you could catch a glimpse of him. Don't be too jealous but once, I even got to talk to him. He no longer lives there, but don't you worry- someone has taken his place.


While I do not live in the side of a mountain the title still fits. I work from home and while that in itself has many, many perks, one of the downsides is that you basically become a hermit. Now that I'm back in school I have enough homework to keep me home the rest of what used to be my free time. Add all of that up and the hermitness sets in even more, slowly taking over all former normal interactions.

I recently realized it had gotten bad when I had a chance to leave my house and be in civilization with, you know, other people, but I decided against it. All day I wanted to get out of the house, but the second I actually could have I decided my house would miss me too much. I just couldn't do that to my poor house. I mean, houses have feelings too. They're actually quite sensitive from what I hear.

Recently on a flight out of town (have you noticed how many of my stories involve plane ride incidents?) I sat by a very fun duo of friends who would not let me be in my own personal hermit bubble, as I had originally planned. They straight up told me that my collection of Oprah magazines were not going to save me because we were, doggone it, going to hang out. Boy, they weren't kidding.

Within this two hour flight I ended up getting a new name (Emilio), let them in on my affinity for Asians, played a newly created game "Guess who Emilio's boyfriend is" (the boy was on the plane with me, but we had accidentally booked separate seats, so they went up and down the aisles looking for him), and told me story after story after ridiculous and hilarious story. One's involving old lady body parts (they work at a hospital in Palm Springs full of Lions, not Cougars, in their words) and one particular story about climbing mount Kilimanjaro while drinking contaminated water that lead to very, very bad things and also very creative reenactments on their part, especially considering we were in the confines of a plane. I will never forget that story, no matter how hard I try. At the end of the flight we had shared magazines, food, and bad life decisions.

In the end,  I was laughing so hard tears were rolling down my face and a flight attendant had to come check on us. After the plane landed the three of us waited for the boy to show up (so they could see which one of them had guessed correctly via the above mentioned game) and the fun continued as they tried to introduce themselves to someone who was definitely not my boyfriend, but who was Asian so they at least got points for having paid attention earlier.

I cannot fully explain how much fun I had on that plane ride, or just how much crying I did while I was laughing, or even probably how much we annoyed everyone else on the plane, but I really don't care. These people had pulled me right out of my little doomed hermit shell and I will forever own them for their kindness.

To assist you in avoiding this downward spiral of seclusion, I have added some clues Jeff Foxworthy style, via my own personal experiences which I am not proud to admit. You're welcome.

You might be a hermit if...
  • You start talking to your dog as if you're Count Dracula..."My leetle baybay, vat should vee do today?" (If you expect him to answer, you may have bigger problems)
  • You haven't been grocery shopping in so long that your only option for dinner is chocolate chips and seaweed, and you somehow make that work as a meal so that you still don't have to leave the house and get real food
  • You put your gym clothes on, fully intending to go to you favorite gym class, only 5 minutes later deciding to take a nap on the sofa instead. If this has happened 13 times you may or may not have a serious case of hermititis
  • You watch an entire season of a TV show you don't even like because it's "too sunny" or "too rainy" or even "too outdoorsy" to leave your house
So friends, do not make the same mistakes I have recently been making. Leave your houses. Make new friends. Do not let yourself become comfortable in the familiar because your little cave of "just you" will get small and smothering and possibly smelly if you don't shower. Showering is important, too.


Image via Pinterest

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