In graphic design, white space is a term used to keep the client from filling all the ad space with text and images. “Can we add a few more images,” they say. “There’s room to add a statement about our free wifi,” they say. Yet, there is nothing more repelling than seeing an ad crammed with messages screaming at you to pay attention to them. It’s not unlike walking into a massive store with too many choices or a restaurant with an eight-page menu. The paradox of choice is repelling in a time when we want to be appealing.
It’s like white space for the mind.
I attended a three-day quarterly retreat for my practice last week. During that time, I attended sessions that help me be better at running my practice, help me plan, and help me think more deeply. At the end of three days, my mind is usually swimming with big ideas. I’m sure you’ve had the same experience after attending an incredible conference or retreat.
I’ve taken pages of notes and have a list of ideas, but it all goes poof if I don’t process it and do something with it because I go back to my daily routine, and there’s no room to fit all this new stuff.
I need white space for the mind.
Do you ever do this: Get in the car and immediately turn on the radio, a podcast or make a phone call? What do you think would happen if you instead looked at the scenery even if you drive that route every day. What would happen if your mind had time to think about things.
See what happens when you give your brain white space.
My quiet dog walks in the woods in the early hours of every day are some of the most productive for me. It’s the best time of the day for my thinking, and I tend to solve issues weighing on my mind and find myself quickly making decisions that previously felt challenging.
White space is on my mind because I’m leaving for two weeks of white space, also known as vacation. And to that end, I’ll make this post short, with lots of white space.
I want to encourage you to walk in silence.
Drive in silence.
Sit in silence.
See you on the other side. Let me know how it goes for you.
Take care out there!
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