It has been a long time since I first noticed a relatively old man being intentionally secluded for a while. He seemed calm and a bit sad. He peacefully stared at the void with his eyes wide open. And he carried on this way no matter how many times I checked him. During those moments he was obviously detached from the common space time universe. There was nothing around but his thoughts.
It seemed odd. I couldn’t explain it, so it stayed with me. Since then I have noticed more and more old people doing the same. Do you know what I think about it now? I think they do it in order to leave some of the load of life behind. Their rich accumulated memories are flooding their minds and they are washing away the pain and the fatigue a life can bring. By the end of this trip these people seem to have regained some of the energy lost all these years.
Call me stupid but I can see an analogy with the modern “always connected” lifestyle. There’s a storm of information out there and our nature never prepared us for it. Our mind, this wonderful machine that never stops working, collects countless stimuli per day and it needs to temporarily pause the storm in order to manage them effectively. This is why good ideas come during the shower.
OK, we can’t fight checking emails and timelines all the time. But… what if we use our short breaks to be detached like the old men do? What if those ten minutes away from the computer become a wormhole to a less demanding universe, a place where our minds can unload the useless information?
It is feasible. During your next ten minutes break pour a bottle of sparkling water into a glass, add a lemon slice and stare at the bubbles. Your mind will do the rest. But don’t forget to leave your stupid smartphone behind. You don’t need it. Your messages and notifications? Oh please!
By the end of the break your mind will be refreshed and the most important idea of the day will emerge out of the blue. If you keep entering the bubble wormhole day by day, you’ll discover something even deeper: the best ideas are soft and pliable. They are ready to be transformed into a real strategy. A strategy for business or a strategy for life. Yes, it’s a little miracle. Those innocent stupid bubbles can reveal a whole new world. Old men know it. Dare to ask them. They will confirm.