One simple change for a creativity boost and a clear mind
So I was stuck. You might know the feeling. Burned out, empty, exhausted. I had delivered the thesis and what was left in my head was nothing more than white noise. And guess what saved me? Farming!
To Nirvana via beans
Here I am on my friends’ farm, sowing lettuce, weeding raspberries, planting leek, adding straw on the strawberries, taking care of the tomatoes, living in a caravan, showering in the river. Sounds idyllic, but it’s also very hard work. However, I almost reached Nirvana when sowing beans, on the back of a tractor, letting the beans drop to the ground: one by one, always in the same rhythm, in an everlasting chain of constancy that should never be interrupted.
Swedish farm life
In the afternoon I am free. So I had time to make a grass crown. We are close to Midsummer, one of the most important holidays here in Sweden, and grass crowns are a very old tradition. In fact they are almost forgotten. People used to make and hang them in the house shortly before Midsummer as a sign for hope for a good harvest. They dry and crumble, but they remind people throughout the year to look forward to the harvest and be grateful for it. And in the next early summer, they are thrown back to the field with all the old dust of last year and there is space again for a new crown.
Finally – Liberation!
Picture a sunny day in June, slightly windy, but generally warm and summerly. My head is still a mess. I’m in limbo and a bit lost about what will happen. I can’t think properly. I go and cut grass and let the farmer show me how to make a grass crown. Then I sit an hour or two and make it. I sit in the sun, on a bench, my back against the red wooden wall of the old barn. One blade of grass after the other I tie around the ring, always the same movement. And while my hands do the work, my brain finally gets rest. The ever turning wheels in my head come to a halt and my head feels aired afterwards.
Do something. Now!
You don’t necessarily have to join farm life or start tying grass around a ring. Do the dishes. Paint the walls. Chop the wood. Plant some flowers. Cut a tree. Iron the clothes. Work your hands! Rest your brain! Just start, and then keep going.
How do you rest your brain? Let us know in the comments!
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