The Importance of Unwinding

I’ve always been the kind of person who just suck it up and keep going regardless of how tired or worn out I feel. Who needs to pause anyway? Next task. Next mission. Next goal. Next book. Unwinding is for losers, right?

Slowly I felt myself losing grip of my own consciousness and focus. Every week I kept pushing myself further, and every week I felt my own presence in each and every moment slowly dissolve.

Always pushing as hard as one possibly could is not viable in the long-term. It works for a while, but eventually your mind, just like your body, just won’t be able to keep up with the pressure.

You have to schedule time to unwind. Time to regain energy and presence. Align yourself with your mind and feelings in order to get back to it with even more strength and perseverance (in fact, I find unwinding the most important aspect of keeping a good habit).

Personally, I don’t want to do any work that I don’t find is great work. I have no interest in mediocre results. What I came to realise is that in order to perform at my best I had to invest in time to unwind.

Speaking of great work — what is great work? Is it the result or the process? It definitely is possible to work on something, where you suffer each and every second doing it, that end up being a hit aka great work. It’s also perfectly possible to do work that might not be considered as great work by public opinion, where you enjoy the process as much as the result. Chances are that you aren’t really sure what great work is to you.

What I find problematic is the lack of awareness throughout the process. A lot of people (myself included, at times) never pause in the midst of the process in order to evaluate if they’re actually enjoying it.

Unwind. Evaluate. Align yourself.

Not enjoying the process? Something has to chance. Either external circumstances or your mental approach towards the work you’re doing. Identify it, and change it.

Taking your time to unwind is crucial. Slow down. Capture your thoughts. Meditate. Write. Enjoy good company. The moment is enough.

Want to do better work? Learn to let go of work — and enable yourself to come back to it even stronger.


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