Today I have been cocooning.  After spending some time out and about this morning, by lunch time it was time to come home and cocoon.  Cocooning has two primary characteristics.

The first of which is that it is about being isolated from the world for a while, sometimes by myself, sometimes with my best friend (who also happens to be my husband!).  It is about taking time out from the busy-ness of life and just being.  Perhaps spending an entire afternoon reading, or chatting with each other or relaxing.  Doesn’t sound like much but somedays in a busy life it seems like a great indulgence and other days it seems a near impossibility.

The second characteristic of cocooning is that it must be comfortable.  Whether that is sitting in my favourite chair in front of the warmth of a winter fire, curled up with a handmade quilt for extra comfort or whether that is sitting in a cool spot in the garden in summer and just enjoying the garden.   Typically it does not involve technology – that is the surprising part!  No laptop, ipad, mobile phone.  Perhaps a book, a newspaper, a magazine.  Perhaps a glass of water or wine, a mug of hot chocolate or coffee.

That is all it takes to cocoon.  Perhaps the best thing about cocooning is that it can take several hours.  A minimum of three hours at least.  A time when you don’t have to be anywhere, do anything specifically, and the chores and housework are put aside for a while. Cocooning from the world, from work, from responsibility and just taking time out.

Some people are fans of the slow food movement, I’d like to start a slow afternoon movement!  In a bid to live a more sustainable life, sustainability sometimes comes in the form of slowing down, taking time out and just being.

Living a sustainable life is about finding balance, and today I found that in the cocoon that involved my favourite comfy chair, a handmade quilt and some time in front of the fireplace.  Tomorrow I may equally find balance in busy-ness and productivity.

You don’t have to have a cat curled up on
the couch with you to cocoon – any favourite pet will do!

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. starproms

    I enjoyed your post very much. Coincidentally I just spent an hour reading my latest book and I had to look up a word in the dictionary. The word was ‘isolate’ used as a noun in reference to one of the main characters in the story. I’m English and whilst reading American literature, I often come across words or phrases I don’t quite understand. I expect it happens the other way round too? Anyway, the character in the book liked to spend time in a cave, reading and later writing, all on her own. She felt safe there for reasons that the book story is just slowly revealing. The word ‘isolate’ when used as a noun means someone who likes to be on their own.
    We seem to fall into two categories – those who like to be on their own and those who can’t bear to be on their own. I could call myself an isolate because as an only child, I grew up with my own company mostly.
    I like your expression ‘cocooning’. It describes the process perfectly. It is something I do very often, complete with cat and maybe one other person.
    Enjoy your cocooning.

  2. Kate G

    I love the word “cocooning” also, especially your assertion that it needs to take at least 3 hours. Slow afternoon movement is a WONDERFUL idea. I have embraced that concept a lot in the last 6 months. I know some other people in my family who would benefit from the slow afternoon movement, rather than rushing around from one task to the next, not daring to waste a single minute. I get tired just spending time with these people.

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