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Guest Post: How To Break The Busy Work Cycle & Embrace Doing Nothing

In this day and age, it’s easy to get stuck into the work cycle. The rat race draws us in, and at some point, we’re not working to live — we’re living to work. Our relationships with our partner, friends, or children get damaged, and we become a husk of our former selves.

But there is joy and value in breaking that cycle and spending time on yourself. Read on to learn how to snap out of it and enjoy the simple pleasure of doing nothing.

How To Break The Busy Work Cycle & Embrace Doing Nothing

Identify why you’re stuck in the work cycle

When you set out to resolve an issue and snap out of a damaging cycle, you first need to identify the root cause of it. In terms of your work cycle, there might be a range of reasons why you feel trapped in a poor work-life balance.

Perhaps you’re worried about taking too many days absence from work for fear of job loss or your workload piling up. Or maybe you’re reluctant to delegate your work because you’re concerned it won’t get completed to a high standard.

Reasons like this keep us trapped, preventing us from breaking out and finding inner fulfillment, both at work and at home. Once you know why you’re trapped, you can work to find practical resolutions outside of this cycle.

How To Break The Busy Work Cycle & Embrace Doing Nothing

Realize that success isn’t tied to work

We’re taught from an early age that success and happiness are tied to work. Nose to the grindstone, working overtime, sleeping little to give you more hours in the day — it’s almost a badge of honor to be exhausted from work.

But this isn’t the case. Happiness is about the individual, what you want to do with your life. Basing your happiness on a job is a tenuous thing, based on extraneous factors that you have no control over.

But you have control over yourself, so do things that actually make you happy. This is a core tenet of Orion’s Method: finding happiness within yourself, without basing it on other people or systems. For instance, nourishing the mind, body, and spirit through crafts or music.

And even if you don’t want to do anything in particular, there’s no harm in doing nothing. It gives you space to recharge, and that’s a valuable thing.

Don’t be afraid to lean on others

If you’re a busy perfectionist, it’s tempting to hold onto your daily tasks and responsibilities at work. Sure, you could delegate, but you want to get the job done right, and doing it yourself is your best shot at doing so.

But this is a self-fulfilling loop which prevents you from ever taking a breather. Your tasks pile up, while everyone else around you are twiddling their thumbs.

Trust in other people to complete tasks for you (Brian Tracy has some useful pointers on this). Yes, it’ll be tricky. But it’s something worth chasing. By letting other people take the reins, you also help them learn and grow. They progress in their career, whilst you are able to enjoy your own time and space.

Breaking the busy work cycle is a tricky thing. When we spend most of our waking lives at work, snapping out of that cycle can seem downright impossible. But it is possible and entirely worthwhile. Follow the tips above, enjoy the pleasures of doing nothing, and find a deeper happiness within.

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Laura Slingo is a writer and editor that regularly pens career, marketing and lifestyle advice for leading publications across the globe.