Doing Absolutely Nothing – Summer 2015 I felt battered after two weeks of windsurfing at Sherman Island and decided to take a break. The winds the previous day had been particularly good and I felt an aura of accomplishment. I sat for an hour on a carpeted make-shift bench mindful of the waves and wavering Tule reeds. I watched the windsurfers and resisted the urge to join them, instead recollecting with pleasure my previous day’s excitement. I relived the joy of the sail flickering and the plumes of white wash streaming from the stern. I had played with a rainbow that had formed behind me, as it chased me across the river. An hour became two then drifted into the whole day. “What a waste of time”, I thought, choosing to sit instead of windsurfing. I reversed this thought and continued to laze. I had given myself permission to sit. While sitting I reflected my type-A personality in everything I do, highly tuned, always occupied, so sitting for this length was a new experience for me. Day two passed and then three. My brain seemed to slow down and become soggy; the wind in my ears dispelled all thoughts of man-made concepts. I noticed that I was surrounded by nature, no straight lines or uniformity. My brain sogged even more as I became pain free. My arthritic neck and back soothed, muscles relaxed and body tension sunk to an all time low. I clung to a wave of happiness just being me; conflict free for the first time in 50 years. I imagined myself sitting around the central fountain of one of those Mediterranean villages. I am old like my companions. I sit contented, happy in the warm sun proudly clasping a cane with two hands. I am thankful for days passed, I am now sedentary, my youthful vigor diminished. I no longer fear death like I used to and sit mindfully thinking about nothing, a pleasant enough pastime, the very opposite of 90 years of active life. I believe the two tensions within us work in parallel, physical and mental. Physical activity and exercise stretch and contract our muscles, our brain controls this mechanism. When my brain became soggy, my body followed suit. So have I been tense for 50 years? The answer appears to be “Yes”, since TMS tension clings to the stresses and trials of life that we all have at some level. In a worry free retirement environment I am sure my TMS issues are driven by my personality, that of a perfectionist, worrier, artistic designer filling every minute of every day doing something - never sitting still! So whatever you want to call it: “mindfulness, mindlessness or just plain brain sogginess”, I recommend forgetting those pin numbers, face book posts, the things you like, the things you hate, sit on a bench and do absolutely nothing.