Doing Nothing is Hard Work

13 Mar

This week in Walking in This World, the task is to “do nothing.” That’s it. Nothing. Ah, this is right up my alley. I mean, who wouldn’t love just doing absolutely nothing as a task for a whole 15 minutes!

Last night, after I announced to my husband that I was under duress to do absolutely nothing, I went to bed, set up the pretty music, closed my eyes, and tried to empty my mind.

Are the kids in bed yet?

STOP! Do nothing.

Is the alarm set? What is that noise?

Oops! Do nothing.

After two whole minutes, I look over to see the laundry piling up. Naturally, the laundry can’t wait 15 more minutes, so I go throw a load in and then get back to doing nothing.

Fidget…fidget…fidget…move the pillows around.

Close eyes. Open them and change the music on the iPod.

Close eyes. Meditate. Imagine myself in flight with the birds in the sky.

Okay, I swear I’m going to scream if those kids don’t go to bed now!

Open eyes and shout at kids to quiet down. Notice that the fan needs dusting.

Forget it. My concentration totally shot, I sit up and feel disappointed with myself that I failed such a simple task. I go back to the chapter and look to see what I missed.  Then I realize that though I tried to simply “do nothing,” I did not fully remove myself from everyday distractions, and my house is full of them. Inside, that is.

I take my iPod outside to embrace the cool evening and close my eyes again.

Ahhh…the sound of silence. I think I actually went above and beyond, as I spent a good half hour in quiet meditation on the porch. But I realized that I wasn’t “doing nothing.” I just stopped focusing on what needs to be done and started thinking about what I have done, what I have accomplished, and feeling good about it.

It wasn’t easy, but it was worth it.

Now that I think I have the hang of it, I plan on doing this task more often. Try it and see if you can “do nothing,” too!

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3 Responses to “Doing Nothing is Hard Work”

  1. Wynn March 13, 2011 at 8:58 pm #

    I’m a pro at doing nothing and would gladly give you tips. Except I’m diligently doing nothing right now.

  2. pursuingthemuse March 13, 2011 at 11:43 pm #

    I haven’t attempted this one yet. It’s the one I’m most afraid of, since I am almost sure to fail.

    • followingthemuse March 14, 2011 at 5:00 pm #

      Have to do a little yoga first — concentrate on relaxing bits and pieces of your head and slowly, you are blissfully doing —————–

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