Emotional Wellness Creative Idleness

Tips for increasing Creative Idleness in your day to day life

Dr. Emma Seppala, in her book The Happiness Track,  offers the following suggestions for building idleness into your daily schedule (see pages 117-120 for further detail):

Diversify your activities

  • On your breaks, avoid the temptation to keep your focus on content/details – choose an activity that is less focused (stretching, quick walk, cleaning your desk)
  • At work, organize your tasks to alternate activities that demand concentration and those that don’t
  • If your work is weighted towards the intellectual, make time for tasks/hobbies that use your hands or bring you into the moment
  • If your work is weighted to the relationships, make time to use your intellect
  • Try expanding your areas of interest – explore a new TV show, visit a new place, do something that causes you to be in receiving/reflecting mode

Make time for silence

  • Attend a structured retreat or activity to help you unplug (yoga, meditation, hiking retreats, etc.)
  • Take a walk with the intent of receiving nature and noticing new things
  • Practice mindfulness meditation that feels right for you
  • Introduce quiet time during mundane activities (like no radio on while driving home)

Engage in Play

  • Remember what makes you laugh, and do more of that
  • Be with people who are lighthearted and goofy
  • Take a fun exercise class that is unusual and outside of your comfort zone
  • Engage in games that are fun for you and try playing in non-competitive mode
  • Play with your partner
  • Play with your children
  • Play with your pets
  • Incorporate playfulness in workplace in a variety of ways

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