I read a great article recently by @Chriskresser about the benefits of rest for productivity. It has only been recently in human evolution that we equate being busy with being productive. Whenever I catch myself answering the question of “how was your day?” with “Busy!”, I know I am not being effective. I forget where I heard this but I remind myself that being ‘busy’ is really a sign of laziness being a lack of priorities, indiscriminate action and sloppy thinking. It’s just too easy to be ‘busy’. Look back at history’s highly effective people. As Chris gives the example of James Watson, one of the scientists who discovered the double-helix structure of DNA. He worked intensely for only about four hours a day. He had lots of time for play and leisure and friends. He was “constantly running off to conferences, going on vacation in the Alps, or playing tennis.” While other scientists in his field were working feverishly, he had a work-life balance and made this amazing discovery. He gave his mind time to rest and reset. That’s true genius! The ability to be focused when called for and switch off and recover at other times. I need to remind myself work smarter, not harder!
Here’s a link to a book of interest: Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, by Alex Soojung-Kim Pang that Chris recommends.