All work and no play makes Jane a dull girl.
Productivity sucks. It's always on a high horse, laser focused, and completely stressed out. Like, all the time. Who needs that, right?
Right. Well, we all need to get some stuff done. Even if it is just Instagramming a latte. The fact is every Yin needs a Yang, and even the most productive people need to waste time, else they will go bonkers. I'm writing this as I've become a mom but three months ago. Every ounce of free time is like solid gold. You'd think that as soon as that little butter ball started snoozing that I would file my taxes, vacuum the apartment, write a post, make a to-do list, whatever productive thing productive people do… but no. I waste time.
I stare off into space. I close my eyes. I flip through a magazine. Watch an embarrassingly dumb TV show. I let my mind wander.
It wasn't until I started having to use my free time wisely and precisely that I realized the importance of wasting time.
Here's why, wasting time can lead to:
You wouldn't believe the things I've found wasting time on the internet. The kind of rabbit holes that you can fall down by asking a silly question.
But even if you do learn a bunch of useless stuff on the internet, you might even learn a few useful things that you never knew existed!
Recharging your mind
In this day and age, being “on” 24/7 is a reality. Social media never sleeps, smart phones, emails expect you to reply back immediately. It's a lot of pressure and your mind needs to recharge. Wasting time may sound indulgent, but it's important to recharging your mind.
Whether it be goofing off with friends or looking at internet kittens, it may seem like you're doing nothing, but that “nothing” can bring a smile to your face, and a sense of joy. You need that because it's easy to get wrapped up in seriousness. Unless you have a really funny job. Or your job is snuggling kittens all day. Then you're getting joy from being productive, which is another story.
Learning about unrelated things
There was a time when I was a graphic designer, and wasted my time reading fashion blogs all day… that unrelated thing turned out to be my next career, and a much better career at that. So, you never know where your time-wasting musings will lead you!
Everyone needs to have fun. Hopefully we don't get that one angry commenter who says not everyone needs fun.
Discovering what's really important to you
If you're procrastinating things that never get done, those things are probably not important to you. Dang, I never get around to organizing my closet. Maybe that means my closet is organized enough, and should stop telling myself to do it.
When you're cramped for time, the last thing you want to try is a new way to get things done faster. The great thing about wasting time, is when you have enough time to waste, you are more open to experimenting with new things, like trying new outfits (I always do that when I have spare time to get dressed).
Developing new relationships
Whether you're hanging out on Twitter or chillin' at the beach, when you're doing nothing is also a great time to meet new people. You are more receptive, and probably looking to connect with another person when you're doing “nothing.” You also have time to develop relationships you've already established when you're not under pressure.
Letting your mind wander also unleashes your creative thought. While I believe you should be creative on a regular basis, I also believe you should waste time on a regular basis, because brilliant ideas often come when you're not trying so hard.
The desire to enjoy being productive
If you are productive all the time, you probably hate it after a while. Everyone needs to live a balanced life. If we wasted all of our time, we'd get nothing done. If we worked all the time we'd have a nervous breakdown. Goofing off helps you enjoy the satisfaction of getting something done even more.
So in a way… wasting time is probably the most productive thing you can do!
[Image credit: Shutterstock.com]