(This series is taken from The Joy Diet by Martha Beck, who outlines 10 behaviors to do every day for the ultimate Joy-filled life. Focus on 1 per week, adding a new one every week for a total of 10 weeks.)
For 15 minutes a day, do nothing, think nothing, be nothing, say nothing, anticipate nothing, regret nothing, expect nothing.
“[E]very ancient tradition holds that from this still core of the self, this infinitely fertile emptiness, springs all that is authentic about you: your identity, your ability to recognize truth, the real operating instructions for your life….Fully occupied by the process of achieving innumerable goals, we lose the ability to determine which goals really matter, and why.” (The Joy Diet, p.8-9.)
(1) Put up the NO VACANCY sign to ensure NO interruptions.
(2) Sit quietly and relax OR engage in a repetitive physical activity (e.g., walking, jogging) OR find a repetitive natural element to watch (e.g., river, fire).
(3) Watch your thoughts as they pop into your mind and release them without judgment.
(4) Return to a place where you felt safe, at peace, and surrounded by beauty. Return there during your 15 minutes of nothiness.
Release any false beliefs you may have that doing nothing during the day means ____________________ (e.g., I’m lazy, I’m unsuccessful, I have no purpose, my time would be better spent doing more productive things).
Try this for 7 days and record your experience.