Active Living, Balance, Down time, How-to

Loving Doing Nothing

I have a secret hobby.

This is a hobby that is the opposite of brag-worthy and my personal definition of “indulgence.” It’s a little counter-productive, but on my busiest days it’s the one activity I want the most. It’s more of an anti-activity and yet it’s one that may be a universal favourite among all U of T’s tired library dwellers.

This (now not-so-secret) hobby of mine, is doing absolutely nothing at all.

I used to feel guilty about loving doing nothing. As my post-secondary education has progressed, I’ve become busier and busier and as a result of this, my idea of a “fun” time has changed too. Of course, I still enjoy a night out on the town every once and awhile (YAASSS, shoutouts to the 6ix) but for the most part, my perfect evening involves a homemade dinner, a good movie and pajamas.

I know what you’re thinking. Only nineteen, and I’ve reached my full grandma potential already.

A snapchat of Madeline with the old/wrinkly filter over her face. She looks displeased.

A little crazy how fast U of T can age the average nineteen year old…

Snapchat filter wrinkles and all, I’ve come to accept that with a crazy personal schedule of work, school, assignments and this month, upcoming exams sometimes doing nothing for fun is okay.

This being said, as a lover of doing nothing I know that despite the benefits (happiness, extra sleep, updated pop culture references and the fake inner peace of a student in denial) there are some serious disadvantages of being a nap-advocating, procrastinating bum. If you are one of those people who spend their free time doing productive things, (1) you are an inspiration to us all and (2) let me give you an insider’s scoop into a day in the life of a classic “Lover of Doing Nothing at All”.

I wake up for school. Ultimate laziness fights the little urge to get up earlier to make myself nice big breakfast… What a shocker, another win for my good friend, alarm-clock influenced laziness. A couple snoozes later, I take the bus and the subway into the city. I have class from 10 am – 12 pm. After lecture is over, I go to my on-campus job as an Admissions Assistant. I work until 5 pm, and head to my 6 pm three hour lecture, which I actually really love. By 10 pm I am home, but this is where it gets bad.

I know that I still have two good working hours left. I know that I haven’t had time for readings, and yet I feel accomplished simply by attending my responsibilities for the day. What does this mean? I deserve a treat: reality television, impromptu Cards Against Humanity tournaments, Jimmy Fallon YouTube videos, “naps” that really just mean I go to bed early… The list goes on, but I will tell you that I have gone to great lengths to avoid being robbed of a night of Nothing. These “great lengths” I speak of may or may not include cleaning my record collection and the baseboards of my apartment?? #GrandmaStatusConfirmed

Some sticky-notes that read: "after work I stay up too late playing video games", "after studying for 30 minutes, I reward myself with two hours of Netflix", "Doing nothing is a never-ending feedback loop contributing to a whole lifetime of nothing", "having to create elaborate fake plans, just to get out of real plans.. because I can't just say "no" ", etc.

Here are some responses from some students living at Woodsworth College Residence when asked how liking doing “nothing” affects them!

In short, us Lovers of Nothing will soon be able to laze (some of) our days away without the guilt of our GPAs lurking in the shadows. Only two weeks and a short exam period separate you from a four month long summer of doing all the Nothing you can. Hang in there, U of T summer is on it’s way.