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PLORK: Creative Laziness, Part 1

If you work for someone else, when was the last time your boss said to you, "I think you're working too hard. I want you to take some time off a just loaf around. In fact, I insist. We'll even pay you

If you work for someone else, when was the last time
your boss said to you, "I think you're working too hard. I
want you to take some time off a just loaf around. In
fact, I insist. We'll even pay you for it."

Even less likely, if you're self-employed, when was the
last time you said to yourself, "I need to kick back a bit
here. I'm pushing way too hard. This 'free agent nation'
gig is killing me. I think I'll take the day off tomorrow
and do nothing."

HA! Not very likely, right? Almost all of us have this
built-in mental driver that says something like, "Sloth
is a sin. Laziness is the easy, downward path that
leads away from growth, progress, and prosperity."

HOGWASH!

Properly applied, laziness does not have to be the
opposite of that constant, frenzied rushing around
trying to get everything done now Now NOW! Keeping
your nose to the grindstone is the surest way to
prevent your creative imagination from producing great
new ideas.

You don't have to be rich (however you define that) to
take a day off and creatively loaf. Read this out loud: "If
I slow down for an instant, it will all go down the
drain." Doesn't that sound ridiculous? You know in
your gut that's just not true.

BACK OFF, VARMINT!

I started applying this concept when I was 'working' as
an Intranet project manager for a major university.
When 10-hour days weren't long enough to solve all the
problems and deal with all the crises, I started working
12-hour days. When THAT wasn't enough, I started
working weekends. When my wife told me she was
thinking about leaving me because I was never home, I
stopped working weekends. The crises didn't get solved,
but they didn't get any worse either!

Then I started working at home on Wednesdays. I
answered the phone and sent emails, but I told people I
wouldn't come in. Startlingly, the crises in the office
conveniently waited for my return the next day, or else
people on my staff started solving some of them.

Then I really got bold. I started relaxing on my day off. I
was still "working", but on solutions, not fire-fighting.
Astoundingly, I got much more "work" done in the
remaining four (10-hour) days than I had ever gotten
done in five - or six or seven!

GETTING INTO THE FLOW IS OK, JUST DON'T LET IT KILL YOU

Sometimes I do get caught up in work, plunging ahead
at a feverish pace. At times like these, I do the hardest
thing in the world for me - I force myself to take a day
off and do absolutely nothing. Surprisingly, the work
still gets done somehow, often ahead of schedule.

By taking time out to recharge your mental, emotional
and creative batteries, you can produce even more of
value and worth. Even if the results aren't apparent
immediately, you're not idle. Your brain is working in
the background and your creative imagination is
actually more stimulated by not being distracted by
"busyness" -- part of the negative legacy of the Puritan
work ethic. And have you ever noticed how similar the
words "business" and "busyness" are?

LAZINESS IS TRULY THE FOUNTAINHEAD OF CREATIVITY

If you take some time to deliberately distance yourself
from the busyness of the typical day, your subconscious
creative mind can forge ahead unfettered. One of the
expressions I hate most from the business world is,
"Keep your head down and your tail up." What crap!
Busyness will keep you from tapping into your creative
potential. Don't feel you have to prove something by
always appearing busy.

Remember Parkinson's Law? "A task will always expand
to fill the amount of time available for its completion."
The contrapositive of that might go like this: "A task
will take only as long as the amount of time allowed for
it."

So go ahead, give yourself a well-earned day off. What
did your mother always say to you when you got so busy
in the house you were driving her crazy? "Go out and
play." Have fun. You'll be more creative, more
successfulComputer Technology Articles, more prosperous.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR


Best Regards, Robert Brents, "The 80/20 Guy"
http://www.RobertBrents.com
For your free four-lesson e-seminar, How To Write, Publish,
Market & Promote Profitable How-To Manuals, email
mailto:freehowtoeseminar@sendfree.com
Copyright 2001 Robert Brents and Blue Gecko Press.



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