Redeeming Productivity

Boredom Is a Gift from God

Published 10 months ago • 5 min read

Dear steward,

This past weekend, I had a wonderful time at First Baptist Church at Weston in South Florida. It was such a blessing to teach on Christian productivity and meet so many wonderful believers seeking to live fruitful lives for God's glory.

I'll share some of the videos from our sessions with you once they're posted.

So, a few months ago, I mentioned that I was beginning an experiment with using an Apple Watch as my main phone. I’m still planning to make a whole video about it, but so many of you have asked how the experiment has been going that I thought I'd give a quick update.

  • It's working! The Apple Watch is the world's best dumbphone.
  • It is possible to set up the Apple Watch on someone else's iPhone (like a spouse) using Family Setup. That way, you have no temptation to use an iPhone yourself, and you avoid the costs of buying an iPhone. Plus, it's just $10 a month on the carriers I looked at!
  • That method seemed ideal. But turned out to have some limitations with what apps will work on the Watch when set up that way. After trying it for a few weeks, I ended up going a different route.
  • The best implementation I found is to continue owning an iPhone and pair the Watch with it. This can be an old iPhone because you just hide the phone away somewhere and leave it plugged in, turned on, and silent. The phone acts as a sort of satellite that enables all the features of the Apple Watch and sort of relays stuff to it.
  • This method meant I could still bring my phone out and use it while traveling. But it was just not a distraction during the day because the watch was performing all the necessary functions of a phone without the temptation to get sucked into distractions.

Running with just an Apple Watch as my daily driver has been the middle ground I hoped it would be. It means I'm not completely disconnected, and I still have access to the benefits of an iPhone and iCloud when needed, but with none of the distractions of social media, web browsers, or YouTube.

So, yeah. I recommend it!

Join me in enjoying the blessed feeling of boredom that comes when you have no phone to reach for.

Let me know if you have any questions about using the Apple Watch as your phone. I'm happy to try and answer them.

And feel free to have your spouse blame me when you use this as your excuse to buy that Apple Watch.

And that actually leads me to this week's essay, which is all about the benefits of strategic boredom.

More on that below.

In Today’s Issue:

  • Essay: Boredom Is a Gift from God
  • We Don't Need a New Twitter
  • How Exercise Extends Ministry
  • What If I'm Not Working as Much as I Should?
  • Quote: Paul Wants Books

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The Blessings of Boredom

2012 was the year we killed boredom.

That was the year smartphone usage crossed 50% in the United States. Now, no one ever had to be bored again.

Killing boredom sounds good, but what if something else died with it? What if, in an age of angst, overwhelm, and busyness, boredom is exactly what we’re missing?

In this week's essay, I explore how our fear of being bored—even for a few minutes—is causing us to miss out on the most important things God has for us.

Reagan’s Roundup

We Don't Need a New Twitter (7 mins)

Cal Newport / The New Yorker

I don't know if I'm just getting old and crusty, but I find myself agreeing more and more with Newport's negative assessments of social media.

Appreciated his latest in The New Yorker, where he critiques the claim that Instagram Threads is just a better version of Twitter.

"To make the online experience less hostile, we don’t need ever-more complicated algorithms deployed by ever-larger platforms. It’s enough to instead return to a conception of digital interaction that occurs on a much more human scale."

That's been my own impulse over the last couple of years, a more human scale. I find myself spending more of my online time on smaller, interest-based communities (like RPA 😉) rather than the big social media platforms.

Fit for Office: How Some Exercise Extends Ministry (6 mins)

Mark Jones / Desiring God

This was a thoughtful and balanced take on the importance of exercise for the work of ministry. But most points are applicable to any believer seeking to do their work well for the glory of God.

"Regular exercise will likely lead to greater productivity, not less, in both the short term and long term."

What If I'm Not Working as Much as I Should Be? (4 mins)

Miranda Carls / The Gospel Coalition

"I technically work from home, but I’m not putting in nearly as many hours as I should be. I sometimes keep my computer on while I’m not working. How can I be honest about when I am and am not working? And how can I do better going forward?"

I always appreciate Miranda's insights on questions like these from Christian professionals.

You might also enjoy my essay on the subject of work-from-home integrity: When No One Is Watching: The Heart of a Christian Remote Worker

Quote of the Week

“Paul is inspired, yet he wants books; he has been preaching nearly thirty years, yet he wants books; he has a wider experience than most people, yet he wants books; he has been caught up into heaven and heard things which it is unlawful to utter, yet he wants books; he has written the major part of the New Testament, yet he wants books.” — C. H. Spurgeon

Final Word

Thanks for reading! I hope something in this issue will bless you in your quest to honor God and get more done for His glory this week

– Reagan Rose

P.S. Registration for Redeeming Productivity Academy is reopening in just a couple of weeks.

RPA is our membership program that teaches you productivity from a Christian worldview, gives you loads of resources and workshops, and plugs you into a community of like-minded believers, encouraging one another and keeping each other accountable.

You can learn more about RPA and get on the waitlist here.

Redeeming Productivity

by Reagan Rose

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