Just saw a T-shirt that says “Stop doing nothing.”
Obviously an inspirational message to get wannabe entrepreneurs out there and hustling their asses off, but it’s the exact wrong message.
Messages like these drive you into filling your schedule with meaningless busywork. Unless you’re busy ALL THE TIME, you can’t be successful, right?
As a result, you sweat and stress about constantly doing, constantly being a king of productivity. Stop doing nothing, stop doing nothing. Then at the end of the day, by trying to “stop doing nothing”, you’ve kept busy, and accomplished very little.
You work increasingly hard, and your business is going nowhere.
So I’m gonna order a new t-shirt right now.
It’s gonna say “DO NOTHING.”
Because that’s the most important thing in your day. Just sit down and be.
No busywork. No answering phone calls or texting. No social media. Just sitting. Listen. Be bored. Be frustrated. Be emotional. Be stressed. Just be. Let it all flow, accept it and love it.
This is the time when you separate the important stuff from the busywork. The stuff you ACTUALLY want to do from the stuff you think you should be doing.
You might think you don’t have time to do nothing. Well, here’s the secret. By doing nothing and just BEING for 45-60 minutes per day, I’m able to figure out exactly what is important to get done, and what can be ignored as meaningless busywork. Resulting in 3-4 hours of time saved and a relaxed evening with the missus.
Want to save 3-4 hours every day? Let’s chat.
Something horrible happens. Your wife of 20 years passes away suddenly and unexpectedly.
You’re torn, you’re grieving. It’s like part of your life was ripped away from you.
Along comes a man from the year 2120, where they have invented the anti-sadness pill. He sees you in pain and gives you one of these pills.
When do you take it? 15 minutes after your wife’s death to instantly get rid of the pain?
What about 2 weeks after? You still have some time to remember her and all the good times you had together.
Or do you take the anti-sadness pill after 10 years, when most of the scars have healed?
Or … do you decide to keep the anti-sadness pill, as a memory and reminder? The pain and sadness have healed. The force of the tragedy is no more. Instead, every time you look at this anti-sadness pill, you’re reminded of all the JOY and wonderful memories you and your wife enjoyed together.
The last choice makes a lot of sense, doesn’t it. Only by accepting true pain and feeling it, can you appreciate the moments of true joy and love in life.
Yet, in today’s society, we’re conditioned and taught to avoid uncomfort. Don’t be sad because it’s better to be happy. Avoid pain because it hurts. Don’t cry because you’re weak.
Which is why meditation comes as such a foreign concept to many.
People keep asking me if they can use some sort of meditation tools to make meditation easier in noisy or distracting environments.
This is why there’s a huge market for all those meditation apps and music and guided meditations etc. To make you think you’re meditating without actually doing any of the hard work. Comfortable, yes. Effective? No.
I always advise against using these tools.
Sure, sometimes it’s fun to experiment, but your meditation should ALWAYS revolve around the practice of listening to whatever you feel and ACCEPTING it.
Boredom? Accept it.
Noise? Accept it.
Pain, happiness, distraction, giddiness, hurry. ACCEPT IT and move on.
Let’s imagine you’re sitting down in a noisy coffee shop to do work or meditate. There’s a person at the neighbouring table making an annoying clink sound with his spoon.
Clink clink clink.
CLINK CLINK CLINK what an absolute donkey.
You pull up the meditation app on your phone and turn up the volume to avoid hearing that annoying racket.
What are you feeling here? Annoyance. Frustration. Something is being taken away from you. This is a powerful emotion and should be explored further.
But no. Instead, you numb it out with your earphones and never face that feeling that came up. This is what we call resistance.
This is why you’ll meet people who have meditated (in their words) for years without any significant result. They may have done everything in their meditation guide, except the important part: the acceptance.
The story in the beginning may seem a bit far fetched, a bit science fiction. But the truth is, we already have various anti-sadness medicines. Alcohol and different narcotics, shopping addictions, social media, television, movies, games, eating. Anything you use to avoid FEELING can become an anti-sadness medicine.
That’s why we’re so angry. All the time.
NOTE that while anything CAN be an anti-sadness medicine, you can also enjoy most activities without running away from your feelings. That’s called being mindful, and that’s what you learn through correctly applied meditation.
When did you last watch a movie mindfully, focusing on every little detail?
Next time you feel frustrated and grab a smoke, tired and go get a coffee, bored and go to Facebook… just stand up and count to 10.
FEEL that feeling.
Then go do whatever.
PM me for help with handling feelings and frustrations.