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"Niksen", doing nothing to feel better

Gaëlle Coudert May 4, 2022 12:50:58 PM
The art of Niksen

Do you know the art of Niksen? It is a concept from Holland that means the art of doing nothing! Indeed, “niks” in Dutch means “nothing”. The verb “niksen” means “doing nothing”. It seems quite simple, but the concept is a little more elaborated than that! These small moments of idleness could help feel better, especially at work, where we can be under a lot of pressure. Here are a couple of explanations of what Niksen is!

Nothing at all!

The concept we stole from the Dutch, a bit like the Danish Hÿgge (the art of cocooning), started to arise in other countries around 2019, in some newspapers, such as the New York Times. Practicing Niksen involves taking time for yourself, without feeling shameful! The goal, of course, is to take care of yourself, to schedule special and calm moments in this race that some of us seem to be living!

How do we do this? It is very simple, even more than meditation. You can choose how to live your little moment of Niksen: with your eyes closed, or with your eyes open, looking out of the window, inside, outside… You can also decide to listen to music, but with no particular intention (for example, not to learn all Celine Dion’s lyrics or not to listen to all types of different musics). Indeed, practicing Niksen means not doing anything at all!

Brain on pause

To be clear, this does not mean that you must quit your job, stop going to gym and tell your children/partner/roommate that they will have to do everything at home while you are sipping a beautiful cocktail. Indeed, Niksen must be carried out with scarcity. For example, 10 to 15 minutes a day, or a couple of minutes between each task, during your workday. If your planning is full, you can also take advantage of waiting times (while waiting for your appointment at the doctor’s, while queuing at the supermarket) and do nothing instead of scrolling on your phone, answering to your messages, checking Facebook and Instagram or watching a cat on a video.

The benefit : a true rest for your brain, which will help you feel better during the rest of the day, or even concentrate when necessary. These calm moments also favor the appearance of new ideas and creativity. A good reason to try, don’t you think?