Can “Being Lazy” Have Health Benefits?
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Our society is very focused on productivity. But, sadly, focusing on productivity can lead you to criticize and vilify the lazy. The result is that you may try to avoid the appearance of being lazy. This is unfortunate because being lazy has a lot of benefits, including the ability to make you more productive.
What Is Laziness
Laziness should not be confused with inability. If you cannot perform tasks due to a lack of resources, time, or skill, that is inability. Laziness is when you can perform tasks but choose not. Maybe the task is difficult, boring, or uncomfortable, or you don’t want to do it. Whatever the reason, you choose to be idle.
Laziness Is Necessary
On the surface, this may seem like a bad thing; in reality, you simply can’t and shouldn’t be productive all the time. Can you imagine driving your car, accelerator pressed to the floor, and never stopping? This would be not only dangerous for others but dangerous for you and the car. There are times the car needs to go slower, and there are times when the car needs to stop so the engine can rest and maintenance can be performed. Your mental and physical well-being are the same; sometimes, you must slow down and focus on your health.
Laziness Is a Form of Self-Care
Laziness is, in fact, a necessary part of self-care. When you allow yourself to be lazy, you give yourself time to recharge your energy stores, providing you with the downtime needed to rest and recuperate from productivity. Laziness can give you a break from your worries. The human brain tends to focus on things that are novel and threatening. Allowing your mind to wander unfocused can help break this line of thinking, providing you with a much-needed respite from the stress in your life.
Laziness Creates Balance
Being lazy helps to balance your system. This state occurs when your sympathetic nervous system has been activated. It helps prepare you for flight or fight and allows you to be productive. However, staying in this heightened state can damage your mental and physical health.
Your body also has a relaxation response. This is a state that occurs when your parasympathetic nervous system is activated. This state allows your body to rest, relax, and repair. Being lazy enables your body to have a chance to activate the relaxation response.
Laziness Helps You Think Differently
Laziness is also crucial to diffuse thinking. Diffuse thinking is the opposite of focused thinking. It happens in the background, often without awareness. When you are lazy, your mind wanders, and you can think differently. This includes being more creative and coming up with novel solutions to problems. Laziness can also help you focus on long-term goals. When you allow your minds to wander, your thoughts tend to drift toward the future. These ambling thoughts and daydreams help you plan for your future.
Laziness Increase Efficiency
Allowing laziness into your life can also increase efficiency. This is because you allow your mind to wander, enabling you to devise solutions and long-term goals with less effort. It is also a direct result of being lazy.
Being lazy means not putting forth the effort, finding the path of least resistance, and saving energy. However, when you conserve energy and reduce effort, you work smarter instead of harder. As a result, you find more efficient processes and ensure your work has a greater return.
Laziness Can Be Communication
Feelings of laziness can also be messages from your mind and body. Laziness is an essential part of keeping you healthy and functioning. So if you suddenly feel the urge to be lazy, it could be a message that you need to slow down and give yourself the chance to relax, rest, and repair.
Laziness Can Help You Get to the Root of the Problem
Just as the drive to be lazy can tell you something is wrong, so can the drive to be productive. While productivity is necessary, sometimes constant productivity can be a defense mechanism. For example, you may be driven to stay busy if you are troubled by anxiety, intrusive thoughts, depression, past trauma, or other mental health struggles. This productivity helps you escape the feelings of pain and discomfort you feel.
When you allow yourself to be lazy, you give yourself a window of opportunity to feel your feelings and think your thoughts without distraction. The result may be uncomfortable, but it is also necessary. You can become healthier and happier by taking the time to face and work with your core issues.
Our culture focuses on productivity, leading us to vilify being lazy. However, laziness can have many significant benefits. It allows our bodies time to rest and relax, which can repair the effects of stress we regularly experience. Laziness can be a necessary part of self-care. Even though laziness is essential and healthy, some of us may find being lazy very uncomfortable. If you are driven to be productive, it may indicate that underlying issues such as anxiety, depression, intrusive thoughts, or trauma need to be addressed. We at Alter Wellness Care can help you work with these issues and confront difficult emotions. Our goal is to educate and connect you with peers with similar experiences. Being in this environment cultivates a sense of community; if you or a loved one needs help, reach out today by calling us at (866) 311-3510.
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