Everywhere you look, you’re told to achieve.
And sure, you can get things done, but at what cost?
If you’re anything like me, you want to do work you love, but you also want to remain somewhat sane.
Life isn’t all about work. It’s not all about achieving. There are times when you feel like taking action.
And there are times when you don’t feel like doing anything.
When You Don’t Feel Like Doing Anything — The Video
Before you read the rest of the post, watch this short video where I share how I deal with these periods.
I share my experience, and what I’ve found to work.
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Not all videos are posted here on the blog.
The Purpose of Doing Nothing
There’s a time for action, and a time for rest.
You can force progress, but look around you. The people pushing are the most exhausted.
Doing nothing is natural. But doing nothing doesn’t mean doing nothing.
Let me clarify…
The Power of Giving Up
This isn’t about lying in bed all day.
When I talk about doing nothing, what I truly mean is an inner state. A state of not pushing, not trying, and not forcing. It’s a state of allowing things to be as they are.
And what is that state if not the state of being in the present moment, living life right here, right now.
This is about giving up what was never in your control.
Surrendering what you think you want, and discovering what you were meant to do.
I never believed surrender was the way. I didn’t accept it out right. Instead, I experimented.
Achieving things was my life for 20+ years. It wasn’t working. So I tried something else.
But There Are Doubts
“What if nothing happens?”
“What if my dreams slip by like invisible ghosts?”
Eventually it became obvious to me that if I am meant to do something, it will happen.
I didn’t go from 0% to 100% trusting life to come to me. Instead, I conducted experiments, and I observed the results.
It sounds scientific, but it wasn’t. It was like searching for a light switch in the dark, bumping into furniture and strange creatures.
A Concrete Example
Once or twice each year, I go into a space where I don’t feel like doing much.
Today, I’m more in tune with where my body and life wants to take me.
So why am I writing this post if I don’t feel like doing anything? You know, I don’t know, but here I am.
I work during these periods, but I work less.
I give myself more time to play, read books, watch movies, take walks, and rest.
What I mean when I say ‘do nothing’ is to do less work, and play more. And sometimes work is play, and vice versa.
I used to worry that my motivation would never return, but it always does. When it does, the energy can be tremendous. I might write 6 books within a year, create a membership community, or start a podcast.
It all comes when I relax.
The Mistake of Pushing
As I look back, it’s obvious to me that pushing never got me anywhere.
I worked 12-hour days without achieving more.
When I push, I face resistance. When I relax, and notice where the flow of life is taking me.
So Remember to Rest
Everywhere I look I’m told to achieve, to do, to leave a legacy.
Many drown under this pressure, and they forget to listen to their inner GPS.
Nothing matters in my life if I don’t make the right decisions.
Everything I do begins and ends with listening to my heart, to my inner guidance system.
When I’m aligned with who I am, life flows. Doesn’t mean life is easy, because it seldom is, but life does flow.
P.S. To dive deeper into doing what you love, and to see through your mental blocks, check out my book: Do What You Love: Essays on Uncovering Your Path in Life.