The other day, I wrote about “Candy Tasks”. These small tasks that can be completed in a few minutes and without much effort. If finished, they provide a nice morale boost and a feeling of accomplishment. I argued that everybody has small gaps of time during even the busiest of days that can be filled with candy tasks. That is true and the overall efficiency can be improved greatly if using such tools.
However: It’s unwise to fill EVERY moment with work. Life is not just about work. Yeah, some readers might think “Oh wait, what’s up with Steven? He’s working all the time, he can’t mean that.” Because I make heavy use of productivity tools and methods, it might seem that I’m working in every minute. But I think it’s important to enjoy life. Here are a few examples on how to use short timeslots in a different way, without snacking candy-tasks:
- Take the time to look out the window. Especially nice if riding the train and watching the sun go up, starting a new day of your life.
- Be thankful. Just notice the absence of physical or mental pain. Most of us are healthy and well most of the time, but that luxury is hardly noticed.
- Think about “random acts of kindness” and how to execute it later on in your day. Some time ago, I read about those small actions that make the world a better place: Paying for the coffee for an unknown person next in line, making small anonymous presents to someone, solving someone’s problem without taking credit for it. Being friendly and helpful to other people makes deeply happy.
- Meditate. Just breathe. Notice the thoughts coming and going without holding on to them. Let them go. That’s all it takes. Attention: When doing this while riding the train, better use your alarm clock! ;)
- Talking to people. Yeah, I know, crazy stuff. Since I life in a pretty small village, I enjoy the fact that everyone is greeting everyone on the streets. It’s impossible to go outsides without a friendly face saying “hello”, sometimes with a little smalltalk. Humans need social glue, so proactively search communication with other humans!
- Read a book. No-brainer. Books are awesome.
- Listen to new music. Since I am a Spotify customer, I get to know new artists and enjoy music much more.
I’m sure you’ll come up with a thousand ideas of your own on how to use small amounts of time in a relaxing and enjoyable way. Candy tasks are awesome, but not every minute has to be spent being productive. Just consciously relax from time to time.
Enjoy life, it’s great! :)
A huge THANKS to Lisa for the very nice image!