phrase

  • Spend time complacently considering oneself or one's interests at the expense of a wider view.

    ‘the Post Office cannot stop the world while the unions contemplate their navels’
    • ‘Self-consciousness is not simply a consciousness contemplating its own navel.’
    • ‘He came from High Times magazine, where he sat around and played video games and contemplated his navel.’
    • ‘Of course, this sort of hindsight is only slightly worse than spending your time contemplating your navel.’
    • ‘I dreamt of spending days lounging in the sun and contemplating my navel.’
    • ‘The yogi contemplating his navel often figures for Westerners as an object of amusement, being taken as a symptom of indolence or narcissistic self-absorption.’
    • ‘This is a famous soup from the Fujian Province, whose aroma was said to be so alluring that a meditating monk would abandon contemplating his navel and jump over the wall to indulge!’
    • ‘When I was growing up, my mother used to say, ‘You have to take time to contemplate your navel.’’