People say doing nothing is a waste of time. But is it really? Numerous studies have shown that “doing nothing” is actually an excellent stress reducer and a good way to calm down. Nothing, doesn’t mean chilling with your friends, scrolling through Instagram or searching for the end of the Internet. It means physically sitting still and looking into space just doing nothing. It’s almost like meditating…without the effort. Human nature keeps the mind racing: what can I do next, what can I do so I don’t have to do it later, what do I have to do later? People are constantly trying to think one step ahead. Nobody wants to sit down and take a break. They should. They don’t realize how important it is to sit down and let their mind and body rest. Resting “should give you mental space,” says Daily Collegian. Taking a break lets your mind calm down. Sometimes your parents might tell you to calm down. They mean listen to music and lie down. But that isn’t enough; it doesn’t really rest your brain. When your brain needs rest, it (and you) cannot be distracted. That means no sound and no movement; just complete silence to sink into your own thoughts. Of course your brain is still functioning, but it’s in a state of rest. According to wrvo.org, “[t]he engine is still running but the car is not going anywhere.”
People need to know the value of rest. The American Institute of Stress says 120,000 people die every year from work related stress. To put that in perspective, there are 10 worldwide deaths from shark attacks each year. Sharks are deadly animals, but nothing compared to the impact of stress on the human body. If people could strive to decompress just 5-10 minutes a day, the benefits to human health would be enormous. Think about that! Those 5-10 minutes of “doing nothing” could actually save your life! Ask yourself: when was the last time you just sat down and looked out a window or listened to your breathing? Something so simple could be incredibly beneficial to your health and well being. Taking the time to do nothing is important regardless of age. The American Institute of Stress points out that job stress is the main cause of adult stress. So while being a teenager can be stressful, being an adult is no picnic either. So whether it’s a long day of work or a long day of school, remember to stop and do nothing. Those 5-10 minutes could save your life and confirms that despite what people say, sometimes it really is OK to do nothing. Take a rest!