Sometimes It's Good to Do Absolutely Nothing

Less is more. 

By Henry Adeleye on July 17, 2015 


When was the last time you had some time to yourself?  When was the last time you didn't have to look at your phone, your to-do list, or even the dashboard of your car?  Have you had a chance to breathe lately?  Unfortunately, a life without having to do these things is becoming more and more foreign.     


In the midst of our super-busy and competitive lives—where every second must be spent grinding, getting to the next level of accomplishments, socializing, entertaining ourselves, staring incessantly at our phones, checking email, social media, and spamming people with Facebook game requests—we've forgotten the beauty of doing nothing.  We never seem to be doing well enough, but also never seem to have enough time to do the things we think we need to do to get to well-enough.  We're the reason the phrase "first-world problems" exists.     


How do we break free? 


It's only natural for us to want to be superman (or woman).  In a world where you're constantly seeing everyone's highlights, you want to make sure you can fit in.  You don't want to miss out on any important events, and you want to do it all while following your passion and only doing what you love.    


For some reason, everything seems so important.  But in reality, most things are trivial.  The hair appointment, the meeting about the meeting to discuss the other meeting.  The giving up your free Saturday to help a friend move when you haven't gotten eight hours of sleep in years.  Simplifying your life is much more difficult than cutting your to-do list. 

Doing absolutely nothing is a good thing.  Taking the time to sit back and relax will re-energize you to give it your all in the future.  Allotting time to yourself to meditate and let your mind wander is where some of your most innovative ideas can be discovered and where some of life's toughest decisions can be sorted out.   


Studies show that making room to do nothing can boost creativity.  Thomas Edison was known to eliminate all the distractions of the outside world in order to discover some of his greatest inventions.  Inventions that a preoccupied mind could never imagine.  If he could dream up a simple lightbulb, just imagine what crazy thoughts are floating around in your head.  You just have to shut out the world for a day to find them.

So, take a moment to step back from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.  Give yourself some time to re-evaluate where you are and the things that matter to you.  Get a full night's rest, for a change.  Put down your phone and turn off the TV.  Do absolutely nothing.