Everyone has a favourite line out of the Australian classic comedy “The Castle”. One of mine (at the top is Denis Denuto and his classic rant about the F Tray) is when the chief protagonist takes his gamily away for the weekend to the family “estate” at Bonnydoon and exclaims “How’s the serenity?” as he sits on the balcony listening to the mosquitos getting zapped.
I love this quote and have repeated it many times in many contexts. Equally, I never really gave much thought to the underlying message in the scene and the quote. That is until now, as I sit here on the balcony of the holiday unit I have rented for the weekend and have been thinking the same thing.
You see Darryl is in the midst of the fight of his life in the movie; a fight to keep his house (the Castle) and whilst he keeps up a good “front” of positivity for his family he is obviously stressed about what is going to happen. Going away and resting his body and mind despite the stress of this battle is what Darryl does when he takes his family to Bonnydoon and he comes back refreshed and ready to fight.
The question “how’s the serenity?” is, to me, the embodiment of why taking time to rest, reflect and re-energise is so important in everyones life. Everyone has stress (show me a person who says they have no stress in their life and I will call him / her a liar) but few of us deal with our stress in a positive or honest way. Hiding one stress or not releasing it only begats more stress in my experience so not giving oneself a moment of serenity now and then can not be a positive.
I firmly believe we all need to have a “how’s the serenity?”, or multiples of them, regularly to help reduce our stress and re-energise our minds and bodies so that we can have more positive experiences both at home and at work. I, for one, desperately needed my “how’s the serenity?” moment this weekend and have committed to myself that I will do this more to improve my stress and my sanity.
Next time you are particularly stressed or under the pump, think about the places you feel the most serene or relaxed and then don’t hesitate: just make plans to go there ASAFP. Trust me: you will feel better, both in mind and in body, for it.