Too Busy To Know Yourself

I am going to ask you a question and chances are, at least initially, you are going to answer yes. The question is, “Is being busy what really matters?”

I often hear people telling others about how busy they are. They are running to this meeting or that one. They are carting kids from this event or activity to another one. They discuss how difficult it is to keep up with emails, social media postings, text messages and phone calls. In some cases, they complain about never having time for themselves and or in being able to do what they want to do. I am sure you have heard this and in some cases, you may have even been the one overwhelmed with everything going on.

As I listen to people compare notes about how busy they are, it always amazes me how it almost seems to be a competition. Like there is a “Busiest Person Award” given out on the red carpet or maybe a “medal round” someone forgot to tell me about. It is the immeasurable number of reasons people give for not being able to grab a coffee, read a book, take a vacation or in some cases, go for something as simple as a walk.

What I find even more amazing is in a lot of cases, people make it sound like they are not in control of how busy they are. It is like someone has magically assigned them these tasks and activities and responsibilities. It is like they forget they are in charge of their lives and that it is “them”, who decided to create the busy. They make it sound like if they aren’t somewhere, doing something at a specific time then somehow it will be the end of mankind, as we know it.

For a long time, I believed people were complaining about how busy they were and that it was truly a real problem. But then one day it hit me, maybe people aren’t, in fact, complaining. What if, what they were really doing was working to convince the people around them that they were important, that they are needed and that they were indispensable? You see, if it were really a problem, they could change it. They could say “no”. They could stop the posts and texts, and the running around, but they didn’t choose to, so maybe secretly it was giving them something else….importance!

You see, in sick way, our society measures people’s importance by how many things they are involved in, in how many “likes” they can get on a page, and in the quantity of things you are involved with. Could you imagine standing up and telling those around you that you were never busy? It wouldn’t take long for people to either think you were insignificant or incapable. You would likely get disregarded or be seen as someone who is selfish. As a society, we don’t appreciate ourselves and this is likely the reason we see so many people overwhelmed, tired, stressed and feeling like they will never measure us.

Success doesn’t have to be measured in busy. People are killing themselves in the busy. Success could be measured in the passion, contribution and enthusiasm in what you are doing. My guess is if each of us let go of this crazy need to busy and instead made choices to do those things that really made us happy, we would all be much more healthy and productive.

Determine for yourself what “the busy” represents and make the right decisions for you. Let go of the need to be busy and instead choose to make a different kind of impact.