In the Netherlands we have the expression: ‘Idleness is the devil’s pillow.’ Meaning that by doing nothing you gain nothing.
Really simple: it is so important to recharge, not do anything, relax, recuperate. Because the more energy you have, the easier your PhD will flow.
Are you tired, exhausted, not feeling well? You can try and make as many hours as you like, your progress will be minimal and you will exhaust yourself even more by working these long days. You won’t have any time spare to recharge and start afresh.
That is why time management is nonsense for PhD students. It is a much better idea to focus on energy management. Make sure you have the right amount of energy for the tasks at hand. The better you use your energy, the less stress and the better results.
You are not doing nothing when doing nothing
How do you energize yourself? By doing nothing, taking time to recharge. Do you have trouble relaxing? Just remember, you don’t do nothing by doing nothing. You are really working hard: recharging, energizing yourself and making sure you will be fresh and fit to tackle your tasks.
My favourite way of doing nothing
One of my favourite ways of doing nothing is to take a relaxing bath. Just add some fragrant bath oil and chill music or a candle. Other times I love to immerse in loads of bubbles and rubber ducks, just for the fun of it.
I make sure I make myself a nice bath once a week and I always feel revitalized. You don’t have a bath? Try a foot bath, that will also work.
What is your favourite way of doing nothing?