How Being Idle Pampers Our Brain


I finished preparing all the required documents I needed to submit for my retirement, claims for death and survivorship benefits, and clearing the tax liabilities of my late husband. And that was it. No more self-imposed deadlines to meet.

So I’ve decided to spend a few days tolerating idleness.

As I was sitting at the entrance of the school owned by our family and selected friends, I watched carefully the construction workers doing the upgrade of the school grounds. At the end of the day, I felt overworked doing nothing.

My envious feelings for people in the barrios just sitting on benches along the alleys with their neighbors and chatting, clueless of what to eat next, was suddenly wiped out. What a hard way to spend the day, I realized.

Essayist Tim Kreider of The New York Times wrote that idleness is not just a vacation, an indulgence or a vice; it is as indispensable to the brain as Vitamin D to the body, and deprived of it, we suffer a mental affliction as disfiguring as rickets.

Having been a workaholic for the last thirty-nine years, my only relaxation is reading, cooking and some brief chats with friends. These did not in any way give my brain a downtime.

Mary Helen Immordino-Yang and her co-authors had these arguments about downtime:

  • When we are resting, the brain is anything but idle and that far from being purposeless or unproductive, downtime is in fact essential to mental processes that affirm our identity, develop our understanding of human behavior and instill an internal code of ethics processes that depend on the DMN (Default Mode Network).
  • Downtime is an opportunity for the brain to make sense of what it has recently learned, to surface fundamental unresolved lessons in our lives and to swivel its powers of reflection away from the external world toward itself.
  • By treating ourselves with idleness, we become more productive. Our capacity to be more attentive is increased. Our memories become more vivid. Our creativity is enhanced.

I see the contrast why I experienced too much fatigue by doing lazy things that day. The moments I spent was focused on the negative thoughts. I figured out that working in construction is power intensive. Instead of using my idle moments thinking how the school can attract more enrollees with the improvements being introduced, I dealt more on the heavy load of workers.

Using our imagination while relaxing allows us to do performance reviews of ourselves. This allows us to ask how we treated others recently. What are the things we did right? What are the things we did wrong? What changes do we have to introduce to correct our faults?

I thank the social media for providing a wide array of information. One that got my interest was on meditation. This gave me time to make reflections before I sleep and before I get up the following morning. It is never too late. I have achieved the level of happiness I didn’t experience when I was still working in a tax administration organization.

Looking at the scene of some of the persons I envied for being relaxed in their lives, I now believe that the absence of worry in their mind attracts blessings but only up to the limits of what they wanted for the day.

Being idle pampers our brain by allowing it to process the stored data in our mind. Just like writing blogs, the brain needs concentration to make recommendations to its host body on how to be productive and abundant in life.

Let us pamper our brain with idleness. I consider it as a spa treatment.

What Our Thoughts Are Echoing To Us?

When I am all alone, I wonder why so many people come to me complaining about their lives. The complaints range from nothing to eat to getting a job. After learning a lot from the teachings of Rhonda Byrne and Louise Hay, I can tell where I am when it comes to what I bring into my life.

I figured out two things why this is happening. One, I am attracting complainants because I also complain about my life secretly. There are times when I couldn’t avoid thinking about negativities. This mindset, I realize, is the reason. Then another way I attract these people is I don’t want to hear complaints. The vibration on not wanting something builds more power to bring to me what I do not want.

Fast forward, when I am able to help somebody in whatever capacity, I feel so blessed especially when I hear the words “Thank you” and “You’re so kind.” By focusing on helping others through kindness, I am creating kind and wonderful vibrations into my life. I have a lot of testimonies regarding how the blessings I share multiplied a thousand fold. I am not sharing money but oftentimes, I share my time and talent.

You can start now. Take a moment to think about an experience you had that resulted to the same or even better experience. Take notice of these moments and find out the good results they bring about. By echoing the vibration you create, it will surely bring more into your life.
Focus on the positive side of each and every situation when others talk to you. Then focus on what you love about what they are telling you. Focus on what you enjoy in life. Focus on the truth. The rest will no longer be your obligation. What you sow, you will reap. You create your life. Just trust.


Sending your children to the right school is a major decision. Exclusive schools are the best schools but looking at the school fees they charge, it becomes impossible for a medium salary earner to provide better education. This writeup would help parents in selecting the schools for their children if they really want them to be prepared for the secondary and higher education.

  1. Talk to parents of your target schools. You can get some insights about each school and how their children learned and improved their social lives. Relate their inputs with the other criteria to be objective.
  2. Observe the pupils’ behavior. Are they behaved, courteous and smart? You do not want to mingle your kids with bullies.
  3. Check the school’s consistencies. Call its office via telephone and compare what they are telling you versus the school’s handouts. Compare the policies being practiced with that of its mission and vision statements.
  4. A good school provides the best communications plan. Does it have a website where you can check on information you need? Are you allowed to interact on website? Does it have a student handbook so that no miscommunications will arise among the pupils, the parents, the teachers and all stakeholders? Are you notified by the school in writing?
  5. Does the school comply with government regulations? Is it registered with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) if it’s a corporation? Does it pay mayor’s permit and municipal licenses? Does it have at least a permit to operate given by the Department of Education? Are the school fees approved? Is the school registered with the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) and compliant with issuance of official receipts and payment of taxes? Do they follow the SSS and Philhealth regulations? These things are very important. You don’t want to enrol your kid if at the middle of the school year, it will be closed for violations.
  6. Plan a surprise visit to the school and its facilities. It is best to see how the school looks like when it is not prepared. Check the security  and sanitary situations.
  7. Will you get your money’s worth? Some schools charge exorbitant school fees but definitely not commensurate with the facilities and standards of the school. Some parents are willing preys to the connotation that high tuition fees equal high standard. All schools are good schools. But ask yourself if you are getting the same value for what you paid for.
  8. Schools with high standards do not display information so basic that any school should have or have attained. It should speak for itself.
  9. Ask for the student-teacher ratio. The lower number of pupils a teacher handles, the more attention your child gets. A good school has qualified academic staff.
  10. The last consideration is the school’s accessibilty and hospitality. Is the school location near your residence? Will the school keep your child in case you’re late in picking him up? Will your child feel at home in case  eventualities happen?

You are now ready to decide. Remember that in entrusting your kids to the school of your choice, you still have the obligation to be their teacher at home. You start becoming the partner of the school and engage yourself in building the reputation of the institution that you chose to be your child’s second home.

Fair Debt Collection Practices Act

Have you any bad experience with credit card collectors? They are surely rough persons because their services are merely outsourced. This pending bill by Sen. Miriam Defensor Santiago should be given importance. A lot of suicides and family issues arose from these malpractices made by collecting arms of banks and lending investors.

If you’re interested in reading this Senate Bill 1277 of the 14th Congress, it is available for download as a PDF file on the Senate website. I read the bill and from my understanding, here are some of the important things cited:
• A debt collector must fully identify himself and state his employer.
• If the person being talked to is other than the consumer or debtor, no information as to the latter’s indebtedness should be discussed.
• Debt collectors cannot call during times when it is known to be inconvenient, which is initially assumed to be before 8 in the morning and after 9 in the evening,
• They cannot contact the consumer at work if the collector knows that the employer doesn’t approve of such calls.
• Debt collectors may not harass, verbally abuse or use profane language when communicating with the consumer.
• They are also prohibited from using false representation or identity, such as that of a lawyer or a police authority, to coerce the consumer into paying his or her debt
• Debt collectors may not solicit payment for fees other than which is legally owed by the consumer.
• They should also honor a written request from the consumer to stop further contact from them.
• The debt collector should also discuss the remedies available to the consumer to settle his liabilities.

I believe this bill is very important considering the financial hardship that Filipinos are enduring now. Unfortunately, this bill is still pending with the Legislative Committee on Banks, Financial Institutions and Currencies.
Today, the only existing law is Article 287 of the Penal Code as cited below:
Art. 287. Light coercions. Any person who, by means of violence, shall seize anything belonging to his debtor for the purpose of applying the same to the payment of the debt, shall suffer the penalty of arresto mayor in its minimum period and a fine equivalent to the value of the thing, but in no case less than 75 pesos. Any other coercions or unjust vexations shall be punished by arresto menor or a fine ranging from 5 pesos to 200 pesos, or both.
This could be the reason why credit collectors are free to do what they want to meet their collection goal. In fact, when you decide to pay to avoid their harassment, they will dictate what bank you have to go or else an irate caller will pester you.


With prices of basic commodities and services rising left and right, a mother of five would hardly make both ends meet. I was observing a nearby community as they move on with their lives. Not a trace of dissatisfaction is reflected in their faces. I saw one child carrying a kilo of rice already past lunch time. Maybe, they waited for their father. A group of kids were picking on plastic materials and after a sackful of collection, they came back with a smile saying that the junk shop was closed. I believe they need the money for some immediate needs.

As I look back to where my situation is, my only concern is living paycheck to paycheck. If I’m sick and couldn’t work for that day, my salary is intact because I have leave credits. A person’s needs is attributed to his social standing. I am wondering if the mother of the kids shall also earn a living like me. Will their  lives be different? Will she live paycheck to paycheck or can she save a large amount of money and just keep their standard?