Put more thought into your leisure time.

We spend insane hours mindlessly browsing.

The great and profound mistake that man makes in regard to his day, he persists in looking upon the work hours from ten to six as ‘the day’, to which the ten hours preceding them and the six hours following them are nothing but a prologue and an epilogue. An attitude that’s utterly illogical and unhealthy.

See the rest of the sixteen hours as a day within a day. During these sixteen hours he is free; he is not a wage earner; he is not preoccupied with monetary cares; he is just as good as a man with a private income. Use this time for rigorous self improvement.

Put more thought into your leisure time. Don’t default to what catches your attention at the moment, but instead dedicate some advance thinking to the question of how you want to spend your “day within a day”.

You might worry that adding such structure to your relaxation will defeat the purpose of relaxing, which many believe requires complete freedom form plans and obligations.

The mental faculties are capable of a continuous hard activity; they do not tire like an arm or a leg. All they want is change — not rest, except in sleep.

If you give your mind something meaningful to do throughout all your waking hours, you’ll end the day more fulfilled and begin the next one more relaxed, than if you instead allowed your mind to bathe for hours in semiconscious and unstructured web surfing.


All of the above was derived from Cal Newport’s book Deep Work: Rules for Focused Success in a Distracted World.

This is part of a blog format I’m trying to inspire people to read more books by posting short snippets - not 142 characters - of things I found most interesting. Please purchase the book if it interested you too.