5 Minutes of Mozart

“Thank you, it’s a pleasure to have you here,” the interviewer concluded. And then, as the video faded to black, the most magnificent end-screen appeared: “Thank you for watching. PS: Please enjoy five minutes of Mozart, if you like.” And instantly, “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” starts playing.

“What a marvelous way to close out a video,” I thought. Especially an interview. Now, instead of jumping straight into the next tab, I get to process what’s been said in the last hour. What’s more, in those five minutes, I finished my lunch in peace and did the dishes.

Five minutes of Mozart was the exact break I needed but never would have afforded myself. Yet here was this random Youtube channel, offering the right recovery period at the right time. Since someone else extended their hand, it was easy to think, “Hell yeah! Why shouldn’t I enjoy five minutes of Mozart?”

It’s nearly impossible to design a system that delivers external prompts at the perfect frequency, but it is very possible to get better at cutting ourselves some slack. The next time a small part of your day comes to a close, take a beat — perhaps even literally. Breathe in, and ask: “Do I need five minutes of Mozart?” Sometimes, the best way to keep the show going is to press play on an unrelated track.