Practices From the Inside Out: What Will We Do With Our Extra Day?

Practices From the Inside Out: What Will We Do With Our Extra Day? February 29, 2020

What Will We Do With Our Extra Day?

Many of us live our lives in a race against time. Our days are full of responsibilities and deadlines. We do what we can with the time we have.

Just think what we might accomplish if we had just one extra day.

Some of us simply react our way toward goals. We do not have time to look at the big picture or think things through, much less practice being mindful and aware.

If only we had an extra day to reflect on what we are doing. We could be so much more.

Just imagine what we could do with one extra day.

Today is the one time every four years or so when we actually have one extra day.

We do not truly get an extra day. Those of us who pay attention know the extra day we gain this year has accumulated since our last leap year.

The question for us, though, is how will we use our extra day this year? How do we value this day, recognizing our opportunity and using it wisely?

Will we spend it on one of the projects on which we could work more effectively if we only had one more day? Some of us might want to do our taxes.

We could spend our day looking at life differently. Can we use at least part of our extra day being mindful and open to spiritual life?

Many of us will choose to invest part of our day catching up on our sleep. It is Saturday, after all. I believe there are ways we spend days which are less spiritual. Resting may be one of the most healthy ways we can invest our time.

How will we choose to use the gift of our extra day this year?

How Will We Decide About Using Our Extra Day?

Our first step in choosing how to use our day is to make sure we consider all our choices.

The pressures of our lives can leave us feeling our time, even an extra day, is already spent. There are so many things we feel responsible to do, so many projects we are pulled to complete. It is a challenge for us to pay attention, reflect, and use the gift of this day wisely.

We need to slow down and take enough deep breaths to get past feeling guilty or compelled. This weekend is giving us the gift of an extra day and we want to spend it well.

It is probably helpful for us not to spend the whole day deciding what we want to do with it.

Some of us will be inclined to spend our day on one thing while others will split it between tasks. We may focus on doing something which helps us become healthier physically or emotionally. Many of us will use part of our day to strengthen our financial situation. We could spend time taking a walk, listening to a podcast, attending a worship service, or watching a fire in a fireplace.

There are various ways we can choose to use parts of our extra day. We may do something for ourselves, for people we know, or for our wider community.

We could use part of our extra day this weekend filling out our ballot.

Our challenge is not to find the single best way to use our extra day. Each of us has many ways we can invest time making our lives richer and deeper. We are looking for ways to put our values into practice, to use this one day as wisely as we can.

Will One Extra Day Make a Difference?

I know people who believe our single extra day is not enough to make a real difference.

They see themselves surrounded by significant, complicated challenges and problems. The world is in bad shape, they will say, and it will take more than a day this weekend to fix it.

We are facing serious difficulties, too many to list on a sheet of paper. I do not know whether one extra day this weekend can solve all of them, or any of them.

It will make a difference, I believe, if each of us who receives an extra day this weekend invests it wisely.

Each of us is given the gift of one extra day today. How we choose to use it is up to us.

There is no limit on how we can use our day to help ourselves become better or help other people. We can invest our extra time in helping someone who needs help or trying to make a difference on a global scale. Some of us could choose to spend a day in stillness while others decide to build houses.

We will each receive an extra day today no matter how we choose to use it.

Investing Our One Day

If all of us, or enough of us, choose to use our extra day this weekend to make a difference, we will.

Our days will combine to help people who need help. We do not all need to be working on the same issue or even pushing in the same direction. Each of us has something to contribute, energy and ideas to help make the world a better place.

The challenge we face is not organizing or logistics or about our political philosophy. Our most significant obstacle is we do not believe we have time to make a difference. We are not convinced what we have to offer is valuable.

Our first step, this weekend, is choosing to use the day we are given today. We will amaze ourselves when we see what we can do with just one extra day.

Each day we receive is an opportunity to make a difference.

How will we invest our one extra day to make a difference this weekend?

Where will you spend your one extra day to make a difference?

[Image by AZRainman]

Greg Richardson is a spiritual life mentor and coach in Southern California. He has served as an assistant district attorney, an associate university professor, and is a lay Oblate with New Camaldoli Hermitage near Big Sur, California. Greg’s website is and his email address is

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