In recent years, I have discovered that I have a craving for nature. I am a sucker for strolls in leafy green surroundings. I find this the perfect place to get some cognitive space, away from the charivari of life.
But my quest for solitude is not always successful because, as it turns out, a lot of us are seeking the same. There is something deep within us that calls to nature.
But no wonder. Nature is not only beautiful but incredibly functional. We can learn quite a few lessons from nature. Here’s the first one:
Nature works in cycles. Photosynthesis happens by day but trees rest at night. There is a planting season, a growing season for crops and also a season of rest. Nothing naturally grows in winter.
We used to respect this cycle with the fallow system. But now we practice intensive farming ie use fertilisers, pesticides to maximise production. The result is that soils are depleted, the environment suffers and humans too, as pesticides residues are found in the food we eat (not to mention the elephant in the room, climate change)!
The intensive farming culture has spread outside agriculture and into other aspects of our lives.
Instead of respecting our need for balance between work and rest, we glorify the “hustler lifestyle”.
It is true that an entrepreneur will have to work a lot. But working too hard is counter-productive.
In fact, the best ideas may strike not when we are working, but relaxing. Paul McCartney famously came up with the tune for “Yesterday” in his sleep. Einstein came up with the theory of relativity reflecting on a dream he had.
There are countless stories of artists and scientists who had breakthroughs in their dreams.
When we sleep, our brain files away and organises our thoughts of the day. We are in effect working subconsciously on our problems.
When we forego or neglect our sleep, we not only impair our mental faculties the next day, but we also miss out on our subconscious working its magic.
Therefore, an entrepreneur’s best arsenal to fight its way through the many problems s/he will encounter on the way toward making his/her vision a reality is having cognitive space, scheduling enough rest, whether that also includes micro-naps, time in nature or any hobby allowing total switch-off.
In a counter-intuitive way, we need some time away from the business to work best on the business.
Being constantly in the business isn’t the best way.
So hustle sustainably!
Reflect, Redefine, Rise