Too busy doing what?
As Americans we tend to be so busy, but what are we busy doing exactly? What do we fill our hours up with? Where do we place our priorities? It seems at times we say that we are busy so that we sound important, we say we are busy to get out of doing things we may not want to do. We may even say we are busy because we doing want to be around people, or we really just don’t want to do anything but don’t want to say that exactly. Of course there is still just saying we are busy because in that moment we actually are. The amount of busy-ness we have in our lives has everything to do with how we prioritize the different jobs/actitvites we have going on. When we practice good time management and can get the smaller minute items in our lives planned the quality of our busy-ness gets better.
Every Thursday at 6:30am I have a very important meeting that I must attend. It is such an important meeting that I have moved other things in my life around just so that I can be there for it. Before this meeting was set at this time, I had a dog walk with Jorj scheduled with a workout to follow. I now get up earlier for the walk and do my workout afterwards. Now this meeting isn’t one where I would loose my job if I didn’t attend it , but I would loose a bit of my ability to have a good day. This meeting is with someone that is very important in my life. She gets me thinking, opens my eyes up to new insights, and to be honest when the screen freezes ( which it does on occasion) her face is always funny to see. This meeting is with my sister. When we talked a few days ago she asked me how I was doing. This is a typical question for her but today as I was giving her my typical answer of “well I am busy”, it occurred to me that though I am busy, what is the quality of my busy-ness. To top this off I started thinking about if I am staying busy because I wouldn’t know what to do if I wasn’t busy? So with that last question, I would have a hard time not being busy even if the level of busy-ness that I hold right now would drop. This is because I am a momma of three kids and with my hubby being in school too there is a lot of stuff I would have to do around the house to keep them going. When my “meeting” with my sister was finished I sat down and wrote down what it was that actually filled my days. When I looked at my list I realized that for one, I work A LOT, and I don’t think I really need to, I walk and exercise quite a bit and I am glad I do, I don’t write enough and I want to change that, I read some and love when I can do more, and what I want to change the most is that I am not busy enough with my family and my faith. I am not that much of a social person so being with other people (especially during this COVID season) didn’t even make it on my list, but I will say I do miss more core friend group.
What being “too busy” brought to my life as well is some turmoil with my hubby. So a few months ago we had finally said we are going to take care of our kitchen floor. We had done an addition almost 9 years ago that was wonderful other than our floor. We had put tile down and it had stayed for a while but then the grout started chipping and the tile started popping up in places and even breaking. We would fix the tiles by replacing them but over the course of the last two years we just started taping the tiles together and sweeping in between the tiles where there was no more grout. I was stressed looking at the floor, my kids no longer wanted to sweep the floor themselves because it was too hard, and my hubby just wanted to rip it out. Back to the turmoil with the hubby. He had asked me to head up this project because he had other projects going and was going to be started school up again, and I wanted a certain type of flooring and was picky about the coloration of the floor up against the cabinets. I had agreed to the project but in the back of my mind I was really thinking “ crap! When am I going to be able to start this? I have no time!” I did not prioritize my busy-ness, and I did not do any time management planning. One day I came home to the kitchen floor half way removed and knew I put off the floor for too long. That weekend I tackled what I could of the floor and worked with Tim on removing the rest of the tiles, cement boards and screws. We talked about the next phase and realized the new flooring might not go in as quickly as we would like because of where we both were in our busy-ness. We both had to be ok with this but knew that this was a project that was important and needed to be brought up in both of our priorities.
I admit I do hide behind being busy when I really want to just do nothing, or when I am mentally and emotionally tired. Changing into comfy clothes, crawling under an blanket on the couch with some hot tea and a book sounds dreamy when given that choice vs. going out to do an activity. If you were to sit down and list out what you do each day and then prioritize the quality of busy-ness that is associated with those activities, would it open your eyes? Would you change some things? Would the list make you realize that you are hiding behind your “busy-ness”? If you are finding yourself saying you are busy but you really don’t know what it is that is making you so busy, it might be a good idea to step back, make a list and re-think your priorities. Until next time:
Being busy doesn’t always mean real work. The object of all work is production and accomplishment and to either of these ends there must be forethought, system, planning, intelligence and honest purpose and perspiration. Seeming to do is not doing.Thomas A. Edison