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It's Perfectly Fine To Chill.

No one wants to be labeled with the dreaded L-word, no, not loser; the precise L-word is lazy. The Oxford Languages Dictionary defines laziness as "the quality of being unwilling to work or use energy; idleness." There's a definition for laziness, but there is no objective measure. Laziness seems to be a matter of perception.

West Indian parents firmly believe that "The devil finds work for idle hands." Hence, West Indian children grow up doing copious amounts of chores. There is no sense complaining; their response will likely be, "There's no rest for the weary." When they can't find anything for you to do, the de facto response is, "Go find a book to read."

I would be remiss to leave out my grandmother's favorite "encouragement sweetens labor." Was grandma feeding me because she loved me, or did she want me to work? LOL. Oh, I remember those days with such nostalgia.

Yes, there are benefits to doing nothing, but you would never believe me. We learn to think of laziness as anti-success. So, many of us do not rest or know how to relax because there is always something new to work towards. We've gone as far as saying people who aren't ultra-successful are lazy and don't want to work hard. We've attached laziness to not being successful while ignoring other possible reasons for people not being successful.

Many adults have to-do lists that are unreasonably long to get done in a day. Then we exclaim there are not enough hours in a day. Adults not only overschedule themselves, but they also overschedule their children.

For some of us, when there's "nothing" to do, we experience so much tension and anxiety from appearing unproductive. Forget about what a person previously accomplished; if you are not doing anything now, you are lazy, or you were once so productive, what happened to you? This post is not encouraging you to "rest on your laurels." Still, ironically, a post about taking rest and expending no energy has to make clear that laziness is not being encouraged.

We pride ourselves on being productive and wear being productive as a badge of honor. Of course, we should maximize our potential and the resources available. However, the question is, can we sit still for long enough from our hard work? Between working a full-time job and side hustles?

How frequently do you agree with people online who claim you are unsuccessful because you waste waking hours participating in mindless activities like watching videos on social media? They would rather peddle the idea that you should spend your waking hours doing things that are "productive" versus getting adequate rest or a break from your busyness. Embrace the opportunity to have downtime; it won't diminish your contribution to yourself or society.

The contradiction usually lies between working smarter, not harder, and creating a work-life balance.

How ironic is it that people are supposedly lazier now than at any other time in history because of technology or other modern conveniences? Yet, we are exhausted from our jobs and running errands all day. Still, we consume astronomical amounts of energy drinks and energy boosters. The fact that we are consuming so many energy-boosting products indicates we are overworking ourselves. We are not taking the energy boosters because we are lazy; we are taking them because we are tired.

We go to the gym, and there are products to boost our energy and help us complete our workouts. Athletes are encouraged to rest actively; god forbid the athlete takes a day off and loses all their gains. People at home are taking stimulants that weren't prescribed to them to increase their energy. College students are reportedly abusing stimulants to stay awake and study for longer hours. You order a smoothie, and the person taking your order smiles and asks, "Would you like extra protein and an energy boost in your smoothie."  

So, maybe you are unconvinced by what you have read here today, but remember it's OK not to do anything for a day or two hours each evening. You'll thank yourself for resting your body and mind.

Empowering Minds. Inspiring Lives.

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