5 Ways My Cats Have Taught Me to Chill


Who’s more relaxed than a cat? I cannot tell you how much I envy a cat’s ability to seamlessly shift into chill mode at any given time, and not feel any guilt whatsoever.

Then there’s someone like me, someone who meditates every day, reads books, downward dogs and tries to eat well, yet is still constantly on the path, looking for that secret to peace and relaxation. The cats have it. That’s right, they have the secret and aren’t willing to sit down with us like little therapists or gurus — but they will show us, if we watch.

So I did watch my cats as they moved through their perfectly peaceful days (damn them), while I looked at my growing to-do list and giant unfolded basket of laundry. After watching them a while, something clicked. I decided perhaps some of of attempts at imitation needed to be more literal. Yes, maybe that’s the secret.

Here are five ways my cats taught me to achieve total chill.

1. Dine-n-doze is A-OK

Cats have no trouble eating and then falling asleep right beside their dish, sometimes with their face inside the dish. Certainly there are times during my breakfast when I’d love to go back to bed and snooze a while longer, but I rarely do — I have responsibilities!

One morning I decided to forget about my to-do list for a few moments and — like a cat — drop my face inside my dish and saw a few logs. Initially it was OK, and kind of comfortable, but then the cereal bowl began to stick to my face and my oxygen became limited. Inability to breathe is way more stressful than anything on my to-do list. I won’t try a bowl again; however, I’m not adverse to a salad plate or gravy boat.

2. Laundry doesn’t always need folding

Laundry! I don’t mind washing and drying, but the folding-and-putting-away parts are no fun at all. I can think of at least 12 dozen things I’d rather do than fold and put away clothes. My cats are also fond of unfolded laundry and choose to look at the bright side. Instead of folding, why not flopping?

Wow! A nice pile of warm clothing is quite comfortable, especially a load of towels or blankets. It’s kind of like a spa experience without the cost! Hey, I don’t care where I get my warm towels — this is relaxing!

3. Upright is all right

Sometimes when I’m sitting or standing, I feel the urge to nod off. My body immediately softens and my mind unwinds. My cats regularly fall asleep standing up, and I love to watch them rocking back and forth, totally chill and feeling restful. Why can’t I just close my eyes for a few minutes while waiting in line at Target or talking to a parent who’s organizing a fundraiser. Hey, when the spirit moves you, take action! And you won’t see any of the weird looks you’d be getting because your eyes would be closed. Win.

4. Wash away stress

Cats bathe multiple times a day. I adore baths and wish I’d make more time to soak in the tub and wash away my cares and anxious thoughts. If I were to take a cue from my cats, who are the masters of chill, I’d take about three or four baths a day. My pruny body could be 100-percent onboard with this one.

5. The old switcheroo

My cats crack me up when they’re right in the middle of one activity, and then, for no apparent reason, dash over to engage in something else that suddenly seems way more important, fun and interesting. I want to do this. I’d love the freedom of stopping something (washing dishes, bill-paying, cleaning closets), and rushing over to something else that feels more fun or entertaining … I do have several shows saved on my DVR!

So what that my responsibilities would back up? It would all work out. Plus, I’d be so relaxed that I wouldn’t even care.

Have your cats taught you to chill? Give us some examples in the comments!

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About the Author: Angie Bailey is an eternal optimist with an adoration of all things silly. Loves pre-adolescent boy humor, puns, making up parody songs, thinking about cats doing people things and The Smiths. Writes Catladyland, a cat humor blog, Texts from Mittens (birthed right here on Catster) and authored whiskerslist: the kitty classifieds, a silly book about cats wheeling and dealing online. Partner in a production company and writes and acts in comedy web series that features sketches and mockumentaries. Mother to two humans and three cats, all of which want her to make them food.

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