Wellbeing

‘Tis The Season to be Lazy: The Benefits of Acknowledging Your Inner Sloth

By Anton Constantinou | Saturday 23rd December, 2017

There comes a time in everyone’s life when you just need to kick back and do nothing. You know, not move much for a couple of days? For many of us, that moment is now - December. Why? Because it’s cold outside, Christmas is upon us and the end of the year is approaching.

I’ve recently broken up from work, and can think of nothing better than to lie in bed, binge-watch my favourite Netflix shows, and pig out on junk food. Just the very thought of it fills me with joy. Not that it’s the most attractive form of behaviour.

Society would have us believe that being indolent is the worst thing in the world, akin to not washing or brushing your teeth. It’s linked to obesity, decreased productivity, diabetes and even dementia. However, when you’re as rundown and overworked as I am, a little inactivity goes along way.

Here are just a few of the benefits attached to acknowledging your inner sloth this December:

Recuperation Time

All those extra hours in bed does wonders for your health. It allows you to recover from a cold, rebuild your immune system and conserve energy. Studies show that laziness is a great stress buster that reduces blood pressure. Why? Because you’re not skimping on sleeping or rushing to hit a deadline.

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A Great Cost-Saver

More time at home means less money wasted on public transport and eating out. Sure, you may have Christmas presents to buy and parties to factor in, but when it’s chilly outside and the night’s draw in early, it’s so much easier to just stay indoors and relax. You can also save money by ditching your gym membership – at least until the new year anyway. If anything, the extra blubber will help you keep warm.

Creativity Booster

That’s right - laziness improves your ability to think imaginatively. By zoning out, you shut off those unnecessary thoughts that cloud judgement and allow your brain to enter its natural daydream state. Such a state helps us solve problems and think through tasks more effectively. With all that extra brain power, you may even pick up a new skill over Christmas.

We’re Lazy By Nature

Humans are hardwired to be lazy. Back in the caveman days, food was hard to come by and we had to preserve energy for fear of going hungry. Even when we do walk, our bodies do so in the most efficient way possible: with a speed and step length that burns as few calories as possible. It seems certain instincts are hard to shake.

More Free Time

With work projects and university hand-ins out of the way for Christmas, you’re free to concentrate on other aspects of your life like spending time with family, scheduling appointments for the new year, and calling long-distance friends – all of which require minimal exertion (depending on the company, that is). I, myself, will be using the opportunity to sort out my music playlists.

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Improved Sociability at Work

Fallen behind on Peaky Blinders, or yet to get through the latest series of Stranger Things? Well, now you can catch up on all the action. Simply glue yourself to a screen until new year’s (or until your bum goes numb), and, before you know it, you’ll be right up to speed. That way, when you return to work, you’ll be able to join in all the TV chat instead of having to cover your ears every time a plot spoiler is mentioned.

Greater Appreciation For Keeping Fit

If there’s one thing laziness does well, it brings into focus the importance of staying active. Only once you’ve let yourself go, can you truly begin to appreciate your body at its best. Just think of Christmas as one, long extended rest day. Remember - in two weeks’ time you’ll be back at the gym again, and wishing for another holiday, so, make the most of it!

More Reading Time

Imagine all the chapters you’ll be able to get through in bed. What better excuse to dust off an old Penguin Classic or flick through a couple of magazines that have been sitting on your shelf all year. If you’ve got time, why not check out some of our other articles!

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