“Rest is a weapon given to us. The enemy hates it because he wants you stressed and occupied.” – Unknown

In the past month or so I have been feeling lazy. There has been an inner resistance inside of me to wanting to write. I just didn’t feel like doing anything.   Perhaps there’s a period in time where you’ve felt this way before? You know where you just felt like doing nothing

The Problem

We get caught up with the guilt.   Society has ingrained in us the belief that we need to work hard to achieve success. The more you do, the more you are worth. And if you are not, you are labeled as ‘lazy’, with often this negative connotation that comes with being lazy.

The thing is it’s not about working harder, it’s about working smarter.   In a recent article by SmartCompany, Richard Branson is frequently asked whether or not he feels guilty when he takes time off for himself?   And his answer is always no. He believes, ‘By working more efficiently, there is no reason why people can’t work less hours and be equally – if not more – effective.’   So if Branson doesn’t feel guilty, why should you?

You Got it. There is No Need to Feel Guilty

Instead of forcing yourself to make progress in times when you feel like you are pushing a huge boulder up the hill to simply get stuff done, it’s time to listen to what your body and mind want and honor it.

The power of accepting where you are at

Let me explain.   Have you found the more pressure you put on yourself, the harder you push to make something happen, things seem to be more unattainable? You feel more stuck and frustrated leaving you exhausted and unhappy?  

But when you start to feel weary of your efforts and decide to take a break and stop forcing progress, you find relief and feel happier?

Something magical happens when you start to relax, inspiration strikes. Branson says,

“You have a better chance of coming up with your next great idea or a solution to a problem when you are relaxed than when stuck at a desk.”

You may say ‘but Branson has an entourage of people who helps him out’ and he doesn’t have to worry.

I’d say, “true, but I’m sure whatever issue he is faced with is on another scale where the challenge is still there for him to tackle, making life interesting for him as he continuously grow through life.”

We all have our own challenges and days where taking some downtime is required to help contribute to our future success. Some people may need more and some less than others. And I believe taking it easy is both applicable to your personal and professional life.

As you release the resistance and choose to step back and take less action for a little awhile, you open yourself to new insights.   In due course in some way or another, things will work itself out, as you get back into the flow and ease of life.  

The Power of Doing Nothing

To clarify, doing nothing is not about doing nothing. It is about turning your attention and focus on something else.  It’s giving yourself permission to do less ‘work’ on the thing you are trying to achieve and taking your mind off the subject.

Essentially, it’s to play more, to find ways to relax.  I like traveling, doing yoga, meditating, trying new things, visiting with my niece and nephew and I admit at times staying in my PJs all day – reading or catching up on movies.

The truth is there are times when we feel like taking action, and times when we just want to take a break.   And this is okay. It’s part of human nature.

You can’t force progress, especially when you know the more you work on something it just isn’t helping. It becomes counterproductive.

Sometimes all you can do is surrender, do nothing, and trust things will unfold as it should.

I’m not telling you to give up on your goal, rather stop the struggle by finding some other things to focus on and do in the interim that gives you joy.

In the process, see it as a time for you to have fun – explore, experiment and dream as you discover what you need to do next. Eventually, you’ll start to feel motivated again. Inspiration will strike as it tugs at you to take action.

This is when you take action.

This is where you are going to be the most productive and reap the most reward with ease from a much happier and energetic state.

Until then, give yourself permission to be lazy and rest your heart out for a little while, or until you feel like taking inspired action.   I leave you with Bruno Mars – Lazy Song ‘Today I don’t feel like doing anything…” Enjoy. 🙂

Photo by: Jordan Bauer