CULT OF BUSYNESS
I was very busy today, Sorry.
I am very busy nowadays.
I don't have time.
I have so many things to do but i am so busy that i have no time.
Does your life revolve around these statements or similar versions? Then this article is for you.
Busyness is a common complaint in the professional circles. Many smart, driven executive types we knew claimed to have everything they wanted and yet constantly complained about never having enough time to enjoy it.
And then I learned that the best way to see what someone is really committed to is to look not at words, but at results. Sort of a corollary to the rule that “actions speak louder than words.”
So judging by the results, everyone I knew — including myself — was committed to being busy. Why?
Busyness: the Socially Acceptable Addiction
Busyness is one of the few socially acceptable addictions in our society. Like all addictions it has some powerfully attractive features — like adrenaline, one of the most addictive brain chemicals — and some useful downsides.
The adrenaline jolt you get from overstuffed agendas and looming deadlines is a reliable source of excitement. There is hardly a greater high to validate your existence. Besides there is a fear of judgement what people will think of you if you say 'Yes, I am free, tell me'. This adds to the social pressure. Being Busy therefore is also a social status.
There are other benefits that keep you in the grip of busyness. One of the best things about being busy is that you have a great excuse for not doing things you didn’t want to do, like racing around on Saturday mornings for the kids’ sporting events when really what you wanted was time to yourself and with your family, for your hobbies like reading, leisure walk, etc.
And I mean leisure walk, not jogging or walking for the pressure of staying healthy. leisure walk is to be mindful of your steps, beauty of nature around you, feeling the breeze, notice your heartbeat and breathing. But we are too busy. We are not awake. We are still walking in the sleep of forgetfulness. We are physically walking but mind is racing with the thoughts of some other topics.
What Are You Not Facing?
Yes, I learned that busy people are seen as heroic figures just trying to do their best to meet high expectations. Even if they are missing out on large swaths of family and social life, busy people get a huge pass from almost everyone.
I had a client whose reality was different: He was staying busy to run away from the things he most feared.
Instead of wondering whether he was in over his head at work, he could point to his packed calendar as proof that he was a valuable member of the team. Instead of facing that he didn’t know how to connect with his young daughter, he could busy myself with responding to email or a ringing phone. It was all very convenient.
That pretty much ended after his bicycle collided with an SUV. Not only did eight days in the hospital (and months on mind-bending pain killers) gave him a forced break with busyness, the near-death experience gave him some perspective. He was happy to be alive and suddenly felt the impetus to actually make some changes instead of just talk about them.
The True Cost of Busy
One of my client actually sat down and listed the things he was avoiding. He clearly saw the cost of his busyness, on his own health and enjoyment and on all of his close relationships.
That’s when he saw he had a choice: stay busy and glide along the surface of his relationships or slow down and make time to face his fears, inadequacies and unknowns. So even though he didn’t have a big answer to creating rich relationships, he found lots of little ways to begin letting go of the cult of busyness and open the way to deeper connection thru the coaching sessions.
To Book Life Coaching sessions with Rimple, drop an email to LifeCoach.Rimple@gmail.com