Do Less?!? The Fourth Zen Happiness Habit ( Come and See)




“Our life is frittered away by detail… Simplify, simplify, simplify!”

~ Henry David Thoreau

I always look for inspirational images for these posts and these time, I could not find many  that just said

“Do Less.”

It was always,

Less is More. ( aka do less, so you can do more)

But in this fourth zen happiness habit,  I don’t think we are saying “less is more”.

We are just saying

Do. Less.


I had breakfast with my dear friend Bhante San yesterday, one of my favorite people, who happens to be a monk.

We talked about our paths. He asked me about my writing. What was my theme? What were my dreams?

I told him I loved to write about the magical eyes of a child, and how even in the midst of trauma, chaos and neglect, a child’s view is still that, a pure, child’s view. They don’t “grow up too fast.”  They are still children, no matter what happens, until they actually grow up.  Their voice is important to me, and I want to share it with the world.

We talked about writing a book, telling readers about the views of children on different subjects. We came up with a perfect title:

Right View

I asked San about his dreams. He told me that he really wanted to explore deep spirituality.

“I want to do less and meditate more.   I want to find the answers for myself. I want to feel my own right path.  I want to discover spirituality, like the Buddha. He took a nap, every single day.  And he changed the world.

“He didn’t say “Come and Believe.”  He said, “Come and See.” 

How can I see without taking the time to discover a deep spiritual experience?”



I realized how infrequently I hear this, What I usually hear is “I want to go deep so I can…‘in the same manner as

Less is More. (which is really Do Less so you can Do More)

I’d like to propose that less is simply less. We do less so we can BE more, not DO more.

I think this is one way to stop the detail overload in our lives, which are too often being frittered away in meaningless time wasters.

I mean, if we are all connected, why do we subscribe to the belief that we have to be human doings rather than human beings?

Do we really have to do it all?

I certainly act like it. I have the hardest time saying no.  I force myself to cast the widest net possible

“Say yes till you have to say no,” has been my motto for a long time, but starting today, I am going to do my best to follow my own advice.

I am doing less, and being more.

Do one thing, slowly, completely and then let just let go of the next thing?

Actually Do Less?

Seriously, I cannot even imagine.

Good luck to anyone who takes this journey with me. I’m pretty sure this is the habit that will show me I have zero hope, ever, of becoming a Zen Buddhist monk.

Off I go, tripping and falling, and falling again.

Making missteps, breaking promises, falling down, getting up, being human.



If you’d like to review the previous three happiness habits, here they are:

Do One Thing

Do It Slowly

Do It Completely

Thank you for reading and have a wonderful day.






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