By Alex Soojung-Kim Pang

Many of the greatest thinkers have something in common: they did not “work” long hours. They often gave themselves time and space to relax, contemplate, and recharge. In our fast-paced society, can we learn something from them?

“Figures as different as Charles Dickens, Henri Poincar√©, and Ingmar Bergman, working in disparate fields in different times, all shared a passion for their work, a terrific ambition to succeed, and an almost superhuman capacity to focus. Yet when you look closely at their daily lives, they only spent a few hours a day doing what we would recognize as their most important work. The rest of the time, they were hiking mountains, taking naps, going on walks with friends, or just sitting and thinking. Their creativity and productivity, in other words, were not the result of endless hours of toil. Their towering creative achievements result from modest ‘working’ hours.”

Tell us about a time when you were at your most creative. What were the conditions that led to creativity?

Read at Nautilus

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