Just bear with me for following grotesque story
Imagine yourself growing up during teenage. See yourself in the loo you were going daily to relieve self. Compare the same with how you passed the motion today.
If you are like most people both your experience would be vastly different. The major reason being the device you carry in your hand when inside.
I vividly remember my experience while growing up. There was a bulb exactly on top of our bucket. The running water from the tap would create bubbles in the bucket. The light directly from the top would fall on these bubbles and collate back on the walls of the bucket. From the age of 10 to 15, I would sit there in peace and daily wonder about these bubbles and the light.
I had also formed a theory. I thought there is some diamond inside the bubbles and the image on the wall is its shadow! I was working on a method to mine these diamonds!
I had some of the best ideas and imaginations about cracking that math exam, mastering that Cover drive and giving that witty retort to the friend while ‘performing my act’!
After the advent of mobile phones, the experience has been marred with distractions. I found myself scrolling down Twitter and LinkedIn pages, watching those funny GIFs. And why not, I have incentives for multitasking.
However, it is no longer that intimate experience where I am spending time with myself, being curious about my life or just enjoying a nice dump! Just like most other activities, it is now ‘clogged’ with scrolling!
The experience of me wondering about the bubbles during my childhood is called Contemplation. The latest research in psychology indicates that I am not alone in missing out on this experience.
The act of just being with your mind without any purpose. Letting your mind wander. There is no specific or tangible outcome desired. It is such an enriching and beautiful experience.
Multiple research has proved that Contemplation is a vital activity for us to generate new ideas, assimilate existing ones, learn new emotions by revisiting old memories or just enjoy without any reason. It has proven benefits in improving our communication, relationships, learning agility and so many other things.
I remember driving and travelling also giving me the same space for contemplation. It is such a pleasure to just wonder about anything and everything while standing near that fast-moving train door. Just looking outside from a bus window is so therapeutic. The touch of that moist wind gushing on your face is the best catalyst. Sleeping on a terrace and just looking at the vast expanse of sky, looking outside the door to that far off a tree and getting lost in your thoughts are just a few other ways of contemplating.
It is sad to see that it is a dying practice in our hyper-connected, attention-deficit world.
If there is one habit you want to cultivate to improve your creativity or well being, I would urge you, next time when you are rushing to attend that nature’s call, keep your mobile outside! You will tap into your contemplative mind and I guarantee you an immediate increase in your well-being, happiness and joy.
P.S — I am practising what I have written for more than six months. In fact, electronic devices are also not allowed inside our bedroom after 9 pm.
P.P.S — I was reading about contemplation from quite a few days. I got the idea of writing this article, ahem, you know where!
P.P.P.S — If you have made it till here and are still wondering about the diamond inside the bubble in my childhood story, It is called refraction of light ( not reflection) So much to my dreams of becoming a millionaire by mining bubbles!