“Good, but oh I am so busy”. If I had a dollar for every time I received this response to the everyday question, “How are you?” , well, perhaps I wouldn’t need to be so busy.
Blogger: Fiona Blayney, managing director, Real+
I am sure you all share my sentiment here, and perhaps you, like me, cannot envisage a time when your response will be “Great thanks, but gee I have nothing to do”. Why is this? Are we really “busy” 24/7 or has it become the social norm to respond this way? Do we create a life that is filled with “busy-ness” because we have to be busy, or because we want to be? What results from being continuously busy, is there some benefit in finding a happy medium?
My husband and I live pretty busy lives, operating our own businesses, and the associated craziness that is two children under two - a story familiar to many of you. Over the past few weeks life has been pretty hectic, and so on the weekend just past we set ourselves the task of “not being busy”. What did this mean for us? No work, no formal commitments, no pressure to get projects around the house done in record time, just time together as a family with some loose ideas of what we would like to do and see what happened.
The idea was to simply strip back the “stress” that comes with “busy”. So what happens in a weekend when you’re not hectic? Your husband cooks pumpkin soup whilst you and your daughter teach from the kitchen bench, you construct objects from the play dough you bought earlier that day at the local school fair, you potter in the garden pulling out weeds that will probably grow back tomorrow. Read a trashy magazine, have a bath, order pizza with your extended family after they make a casual pop in. Of course, you go to Bunnings and come home with a chair matt and pair of gloves, rather than the irrigation system you were thinking was going to be easy to install – but hey at least you had a sausage on a bun.
What did we learn? It is ok to not be “busy” all the time. We put a range of activities in our day, week, month and year for many reasons: financial, personal, emotional, family. The challenge is recognising that being busy is a decision. Today take stock and see who is in control of your time. Are you “deciding” how every minute of valuable time is going to be spent or are you simply busy being busy?
Every now and again it’s important to stop and smell the Bunnings sausage sizzle.