The Productivity of Doing Nothing

Aug 23, 2021

There is Productivity in Doing Nothing

Yep, it’s true!

We live in a face-paced world. There is work to be done, kids to get to and fro, dinners to be made (and eaten!), houses to be cleaned, planning to be done … the list goes on. 

We are so caught up in the art of multitasking that we’ve forgotten the importance of sitting, of relaxing, of taking time out of our busy day to be alone with our thoughts. 

And guess what? When we stop listening to people or ignoring what they have to say, they eventually stop talking. 

Our inner self is no different.


I recently had a client come to see me. He is a successful entrepreneur with his hand in many business ventures. 

He is smart, articulate and funny. He is a mentor to many of his colleagues and works hard to provide for his family. He reads entrepreneurial books, listens to motivational podcasts and conducts webinars. By all accounts, he is the poster child of success.  

The trouble for him is that he is so engrossed in learning how to build his business and gain increasing success that he’s lost himself in the process. 

Gone is that little voice, that intuitive voice that has served him so well in days gone by. He’s lost the ability to hear his thoughts and trust his insights.

Why? He is so “on” all the time that he has unwittingly silenced the powerful voice that’s brought him this far.  His problem? He is too plugged-in and as a result, he’s lost connection with himself. Ironic isn’t it!


We live in a society that over consumes everything. Consume, consume, consume. It’s no longer just limited to food, or alcohol or TV. We are so results-oriented these days that we have over-consumed over consumption. 

It’s like the old Pac-Man game where the little guy eats his way through the maze. He motors along through the all the twists and turns on the screen eating as much as possible. He is focused, on point and goal-oriented.

His ultimate desire is to consume as many Pac-dots as possible while avoiding Blinky, Pinky, Inky and Clyde. The problem here is that life is not a game and the one with the most toys, points, or Pac-dots does not always win. In fact, they rarely do.  


Social media is an integral part of business. It can help you get to the next level without being that Amway salesperson. 

The reach of Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube and Medium have consumed our thoughts on almost every level.  We take pictures of our kids, of our food, of ourselves, and we happily post it all for the world to see. 

We convince ourselves that the world is interested; that we matter more because we do certain activities or eat healthy fares. We feel a sense of worthiness and value when our posts are liked, retweeted or shared, and in the end we surmise that the external is more important than the internal.

There is nothing wrong with connecting with others through social media. It can help us move our business to the next realm and can help us reach markets we never dreamed possible. Many people and businesses alike are made through social media marketing, but like with most things, moderation is key.  

In much the same way as eating too much chocolate (is this even possible?) or watching too much TV, the negatives usually outweigh the positives. It is no different with being too plugged in. 

The power is found in the balance.


My client has implemented a few small changes in his life and as we continue our work together, he hopes these small adjustments will make a big difference.  

He has modified his schedule to include “off” time; he has planned fun activities that are not business-productive, but are instead self-productive; and, he has committed to investigating the merits of mediation and the like. 

Above all, he’s begun the process of reconnecting with himself. And even in a short period, he’s realized that although he wants to continue to build his business and increase his reach, it’s no longer his desire to consume as many proverbial Pac-dots as possible. Between you and me, I think he’s discovered that the cost it too great!

And you know what? He’s sleeping better, exercising more and feeling a healthier sense of well-being overall. Hmmm, go figure!

It’s Good To Talk.