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Embracing the Art of Doing Nothing

Do you remember the last time you gave yourself a break? I don’t mean a break where you grabbed your phone and pulled up social media. When was the last time you gave yourself time to just sit and think without any distractions?

Often, many people don’t give themselves time to just think. We are so used to filling our schedules up to the point where we don’t have any time to be alone with our thoughts. When this happens over a while, we experience burnout.

Burnout is a prolonged period of stress on the body which shows itself both physically and mentally. Burnout happens when we don’t give ourselves any time to slow down and clear our mind. We don’t need to pack out schedules in order to live a fulfilling life because the very opposite of that is actually true.

If you want to learn the importance of doing nothing, and how you can do nothing and feel great about it, this blog post is for you! Keep reading as we dive into how to do.. you guessed it, nothing!

You Don't Need to be Productive 24/7

There is this assumption that we need to be productive every moment of the day and fit in as much as we possibly can into our schedules. By doing this, we believe that we have had a solid, productive day. This couldn’t be any further from the truth.

Slowing down will allow you to become more productive when you need it most. You will be able to get more meaningful work done, as opposed to completing a bunch of random, unnecessary tasks off of the to-do list.

Your best ideas may come to you when you are doing nothing since you are allowing your mind to fully be at ease, and be open to brainstorming new ideas.

Doing Nothing Allows You to Feel All of Your Feelings

Often, we experience feelings and don’t fully feel them. If we experience a positive feeling such as happiness, we usually try to feel this as much as possible, since it feels great! However, when we experience sadness or anger, we may not fully express our feelings, and decide to repress them instead.

I can definitely relate to this as for most of my life I kept my feelings to myself and didn’t share any negative feelings with anyone else. I only shared the positive feelings and moments in my life, and kept anything else hidden.

I’ve come to realize this isn’t healthy and that it’s so important to be open and authentic with the people in our lives. Therefore, we think by doing this, we are getting rid of the feeling, but we are just burying it further within ourselves. When we suppress our feelings, they always have a way of coming back to us when we least expect it.

4 Steps to Allow Yourself to Do Nothing

1. Become Aware of Your Habit

Do you have a busy schedule that can often seem overwhelming? Becoming aware of the fact that you need to give yourself time to do nothing is the first step to getting there. Recognize that you need to give yourself time to “ do nothing” this way you can be recharged and focused when doing your best work.

2. Figure Out What Doing Nothing Looks like for You

Figure out what doing nothing means for you. This is going to look different for everyone. Are you going to take a walk without any earphones in? Perhaps you may read a book for 20 minutes, or you will just sit down and let your thoughts wander. Regardless, set a clear idea of what this means for you.

3. Schedule Time Blocks in Your Calendar

Once you have figured out how you will do nothing, the best way to commit to it is by scheduling a time you will do this for. For example, you can take 20-30 minutes in the morning or at lunchtime to give yourself a break . Perhaps you will take this opportunity to journal or reflect on your day so far.

4. Stick With It

Now that you have created a plan on how to give yourself time to do nothing, it’s time to put that into action. While many of us have our productivity peak hours, we also have hours where our energy dips. Energy dips tend to be in the afternoon for a majority of us, and if this is the case for you I recommend you give yourself some space to do nothing during this time.

What Does Doing Nothing Look Like to you?

I hope this post has encouraged you to take some time for yourself and do nothing every once and a while. There is no shame in giving yourself a break, after all we aren’t meant to work 24/7. Learning to allow yourself to do nothing is not easy, but it will help you prevent burnout in the long run, and do more meaningful work.

Visit our blog to learn more about this topic and how to Find Time to Take Care of Yourself.

Share your thoughts on the blog in the comments below or send me a message on social media to share your thoughts on this post! I would love to hear from you!

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