Do you check your phone first thing in the morning?
Don’t worry– this is not another article telling you that phone = bad and that we are all being brainwashed through the 5G waves. Instead, take a moment to reflect. When are you, during any given day, doing and consuming absolutely nothing?
From the moment you wake up, you are engaging with a constant stream of information. This information comes not just from your phone when you wake up (though this is a major factor) but also from studying, interacting with others, and even from sensory information– just think of all the things we see, hear, touch, taste, and smell in a given day.
To do nothing is to remove yourself from this barrage of information. It’s intentional, though it carries with it feelings of guilt and shame. If you’re a student, doing nothing might make you feel like you’re wasting time where you could be studying or doing assignments. If you’re out of school, doing nothing might feel like you’re wasting the precious little free time you get outside of a 9-5.
Doing nothing is itself a valuable way to spend your time. In other words, you are doing something when you are doing nothing. You are being productive, though not in the general sense we have been taught.
A few ways to begin doing nothing is to allot time for it. Schedule in your “doing nothing” time and stick to it. Another way is to find places where you feel safest doing nothing. If your dorm reminds you of all the school work you have left to do, leave your dorm for somewhere not associated with school.
The trick to doing nothing is to also feel nothing about it. The beauty of doing nothing is that it doesn’t require rules; it doesn’t require checking in after to track your progress. Allow yourself to do nothing without the pressure of doing it correctly. In the end, it might be just what you need for your health and wellness.