Today, I have a particular strong thought about the phrase ‘having nothing to do’ or what we say ‘無聊’ in Chinese. I keep thinking the question ‘do we really have any time that we have nothing to do?’ or we just do not want to do what we have to do or things that we have to do?
After having some thought, I realize that the answer is we do not want to do anything at all sometimes. But the reality is – we sometimes try to convince ourselves that we have nothing to do and to allow ourselves to waste our time for granted. Then, we end up wasting a lot of time doing things for no purposes such as browsing Facebook hundreds of time (like in a minute or so) in a day, lying on sofa playing mobile phone, or even sleeping.
So, I try not to make myself saying I have nothing to do. Instead, I try to give myself some justifications why I am doing this. Feeling ‘無聊’ sometimes can be caused by a sense of emptiness or ‘空虛’ but I hope that is not happening to be. When people feel ‘空虛’, they lose their directions and can easily be preyed to do some bad things – I think some people commit crime because of this? So, if I am really doing ‘nothing’, I should say I do not feel like doing anything right now. All I need is some rests. Right?
Other than wanting to know about motivations behind one’s behavior, similarly, we could apply this to meanings in communication – ‘people do not always say what they mean and people do not always mean what they say’. Perhaps we could try to think beyond the surface. Then, we will see the deeper meanings beyond the surface meanings.