How often do you just sit and do nothing? I mean, no phone, no TV, no conversation…no thoughts. Or, how often do you sit and just think about things? You know, your life – God, family, friends, work…
Pick up the phone and scroll, scroll, scroll…
Get in the car after a day of work and go, go, go…
Immediately turn on music, or some podcast, or whatever–
No reflection there, just taking more and more in, in, in.
If you ate like that you’d break the scales.
Whenever I think about this topic, this go, go, go mentality, I think of Norman Vincent Peele, author of the very popular “The Power of Positive Thinking.” He was relating a story where his host had packed his schedule super-full and it was go, go, go. Norman realized he was caught up and tense and out of control. Finally Norman said “Enough!” and when the host said it was dinner time Norman excused himself to his room to freshen up and then just took a pause. He had to speak later and he needed poise. You don’t get poise by being go, go, go, rush, rush, rush.
He then said that one of the keys to health was to take 15 minutes a day to just chill out and sit and do nothing. Paramhansa Yogananda has a saying that goes like this:
‘If you read one hour, then write two hours, think three hours, and meditate all the time!’
Fuck. That dude was hard core but there is something to it. Slow down and do things effectively and don’t be so damn scattered. Meditation is definitely super important.
All around you see this pressure to go, go, go and you look at the results and you think, man, if we just chilled out we’d get to a better spot more quickly and with far less stress.
My boss is in France and it seems like he has it figure out. It’s part of their culture, too, but there is something in particular about him. It’s because of him that I take actual vacations where I don’t check email or anything. Way more relaxing.
It’s certainly way more relaxing than the life of having no space for pause, reflection, and introspection. I mean what I see and sometimes succumb to is a life where it’s constant media and stimulation and no pause. This just can’t work longterm and the results are poor.
Do you feel that? That tightness in the chest? That fatigue? That addiction? It’s because there’s no space and no calm.
Let it go.
Pick the appropriate pace that is slower, deeper, calmer, and more effective. You get a better result and you feel better. The relationships are better. It’s more, shall we say, chill.
Take the vacation. Set the boundary. Put down the phone. Turn off the TV. And pay attention and focus.