Do you know of a competition that literally requires you to do nothing?
Generally, when it comes to competition, speed is of the essence, along with energy and agility to test how fast and strong you are.
Whether it be a physical exercise or a mental one, most competitions are all about how much you can do in as little time.
And for many of us lazy bums, these kinds of competitions present a red flag and make us run as far away from them as possible.
But this competition that was first held in Seoul, South Korea in the year 2014 was so well received that it became an annual competition with it spanning across China’s Beijing, Rotterdam in the Netherlands, Taipei in Taiwan and this year it will be held in Hong Kong on 31st March 2018.
But what is this competition and does it really have any benefits to it or is it just another crazy trend from the millennial generation?
Space Out Competition
The Space Out Competition was started by WoopsYang in 2014, by a visual artist who was leading a hectic life and wanted to find a way to control it or lessen the anxiety it created.
As per the creator “I was suffering from burnout syndrome at the time, but would feel extremely anxious if I was sitting around doing nothing, not being productive in one way or another.”
“I thought to myself: ‘We would all feel better about doing nothing if we did nothing together as a group.”
Thus the competition was started in the Seoul area of South Korea and is aimed at countering the rapidly increasing digital addiction that South Korea is seeing now. The country has almost 50 million smartphone users and according to studies, almost 15% of the population is showing signs of addiction.
This competition asks the participants to slow down and prevent burning out due to the stress of daily life and becoming too overworked.
The competition is simple in which the participant has to sit still for almost 90 minutes without doing anything. You cannot check your phone, talk to another participant, sleep or laugh, drink, dance or do anything that will divert your brain from the task.
Volunteers will every 15 minutes come around and check the heart rate of the participants and finally, a winner will be selected from the top 10 who has the most stable heart rate and audience votes.
The winner will get the ironically named Rodin’s ‘Thinker’ trophy along with a certificate award and even an invitation ticket to the next annual space out competition.
What Are Its Benefits?
The name of the competition comes from the Korean word ‘mung’ which as per Guardian, means to space out and it works to raise awareness about information overload and stress.
The creator said that the aim is to ‘Let our brains relax!’.
“Let’s enjoy just thinking nothing”.
There are several benefits to not thinking anything and that too for such a long period of time.
A South Korean rapper called Crush who won the 2016 competition said that it was the stress and exhaustion that came from preparing his album.
Shin was quoted as saying “I recommend this for people who have migraines or complicated thoughts”.
Even Wang Chenbo, an organizer of the event commented that spacing out is “a luxury” in today’s world. “The everyday rhythm of people’s lives is so fast, they work extremely hard,” Chenbo said. “So I think that, from a modern person’s perspective, finding an opportunity to space out is not easy.”
The benefit arises from working towards clearing your mind of any thoughts whatsoever and is a classic Yoga technique even here in India.
Meditation is something that might seem similar, but even in that you usually chant the word ‘Om’ in order to center yourself.
This kind of meditation where you cannot think, speak or do anything that will distract your brain is an especially high level that not many can achieve while keeping a stable heart rate.
People who experience depression, anxiety or even workaholics will benefit from this competition as it allows one to focus on absolutely nothing, thus allowing the stress to leave the body in a healthy manner.
The collective group quality of the competition works to remove any anxiety a person might feel while spacing out and makes one feel like they are part of a team.
Image Credits: Google Images