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Summer Series: It's Okay to Be Lazy

Updated: Oct 10

If you've ever been called lazy, you know it wasn't meant as a compliment. Likewise, if you've called someone else lazy, you certainly weren't trying to be nice or lift their spirits. Laziness is a word used to describe someone who doesn't do what they're supposed to do, whether it's not getting out of bed in the morning, taking out the trash, studying for a test, or completing work assignments on time. There is no shortage of reasons why people are labeled "lazy."

Today, we want to look at the positive side of being lazy. Yes, there is one! When we talk about laziness as a positive attribute, we don't mean avoiding responsibility. Rather, we mean taking a break from the daily hustle, allowing yourself to rest instead of stress, slowing down your fast-paced busyness, and just relaxing. In this sense of the word, being lazy has many benefits, and summer is the perfect season to take advantage of it.

Summer is a time when our regular schedules are shaken up: the kids are home from school, the beach is beckoning, and the days are long so you can get to those passion projects you've been pushing off. Certainly, summer is a good time to reign in your overtime, set limits for working outside of office hours, and find ways to minimize your stress.

The Benefits of Being Lazy

As we take advantage of the many benefits of summertime, why not take advantage of our ability to be lazy? Here are 5 benefits of being lazy that you can take with you from the summer into the whole year.

Boosts Emotional IntelligenceTaking time to sit back and watch TV can help boost your emotional intelligence, according to a study conducted by the University of Oklahoma. "Film narratives, as well as a written narrative, may facilitate the understanding of others' minds," wrote university psychologists Jessica Black and Jennifer Barnes. In other words, taking time to relax and catch up on some of your favorite television shows can actually help you read other people's cues better.

Clearer SkinIf you didn't expect to see any physical health benefits of being lazy, think again. Stress is known to have significant effects on your skin, including making it more sensitive and exaggerating existing skin problems. This happens due to the hormones released when you feel stressed these hormones then directly affect your skin. Taking time to de-stress should, therefore, be considered part of your skincare routine!

Increases CreativityWhen you're constantly doing, doing, doing, you don't have any time to stop and think, never mind tap into your creative side. And yet, creativity is something that's important in every aspect of our lives.

Work: even if you don't work in a creative field, plenty of work situations require creative problem solving, creative solutions, creative products, creative advertising, etc.

Life: when your child doesn't want to eat their veggies, you need to come up with a creative way to make it happen. When your partner's birthday is coming up, you need to think of something nice to get.

There are so many situations that call for creativity, and yet, we are often so steeped in busyness that we don't have time to recharge.

Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, author of Rest: Why You Get More Done When You Work Less, said in an interview, "It seems self-evident that more work equals more output. This is true of machines, so why shouldn't it be true of us? Well, it's not." His entire thesis is that human beings must rest in order to reach the height of creativity and productivity. That is a thesis we can get behind!

All-Around Improved HealthPeople who sleep late or take naps in the middle of the day may be called lazy, but the fact is, sleep is good for us. Maybe the time frame needs to be adjusted (i.e. going to sleep earlier), but on the whole, getting enough sleep is one of the best things you can do for your health.

Health benefits of sleep include elevated mood, increased energy, improved memory, a stronger immune system, reduced risk of certain cancers, lower blood pressure, weight maintenance, and more. If that's not a reason to go to get as much sleep as you can, we don't know what is.

Less Prone to Burnout Recent research has shown that taking breaks, both during the workday and when at home, can restore energy in the short-term and prevent burnout in the long-term. Other scientifically-backed benefits of taking breaks include elevated mood, improved attention, even reduced headaches, eyestrain, and back pain. In many of these studies, the type of breaks taken makes a difference in the benefits. For example, socializing, engaging in cognitive activities, and going for a walk are all breaks that lead to positive benefits, while snack breaks don't have the same effects.

Finding the Right BalanceAs with most things in life, the key to getting the most out of "laziness" is balance. It's good to be lazy, take time for yourself, take breaks, and relax, as long as it's done in the right ratio. In other words, spending days on end taking breaks and not attending to your responsibilities can get you into a lot of trouble. But finding time for breaks in between your daily responsibilities can help you excel.

When you excel in your daily life, you feel good emotionally and physically. This is called a high-quality of life, which is something you need to constantly work on, not achieve as a one-time thing. The higher your quality of life, the more likely you are to get better rates on life insurance. Life insurance premiums are usually lower for people who are emotionally and physically healthy, which means taking care of yourself should be a priority.

Sproutt insurance advisors are available to help you determine what kind of life insurance is best for you. Simply answer a few questions and we will find the best-value plan for your lifestyle, needs, and budget.

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