Sometimes, do nothing.
Technology makes us more connected and less connected as humans with each other than ever before. Look at any line of people waiting and you’ll see at least three quarters with their heads pointed down at their phones. Waiting rooms: phones, magazines, newspapers–though to be honest I’m just happy anyone is reading anything.
There’s this constant pressure to be in constant motion–not productive, just busy.
This goes back to my thinking in this article https://maxshank.com/work-play-pain-pleasure-can-even-feel-difference/319
But today I want us to go a little deeper into the opposite of busy, which is nothing. I’m not talking about channel surfing “nothing” or looking at cat videos on youtube “nothing.” I mean active nothing.
Sit down or lie down. Just hang out there and do nothing. Try to clear your mind rather than let it run wild. Just be still and do nothing. I would conservatively guess that about half of the people who try this are going to feel like they are coming out of their skin at around 5 minutes.
I think it’s important to appreciate the stillness and just be for a few minutes rather than think about what you are doing or are going to be doing next. I’m all for productivity but there is a huge difference between being busy and being productive. So the next time you’re waiting for something, just do nothing for a few minutes. The next time you “have a few minutes to kill” (there’s a stupid way of looking at time, if you ask me) at home, just do nothing for a few of those minutes and allow the nothing.
I think you’ll find that a little dose of nothing can be really good for your psyche.
What you’re really doing is giving yourself permission to not be busy doing something every second of every day–and this is a really good thing.
Doc, what do you recommend for (insert problem you put upon yourself)?
A healthy dose of nothing.
Better Every Day