When did being “busy” become a cultural expectation?
It can be a destructive four-letter word; said in passing, said in private, and most dangerous of all - said to one’s own self. Why do we think we are so busy? And why do we spend our limited time telling everyone we see?
There are two factors at play behind this word:
1. We don't spend our time well. Our frantic lifestyles are often caused not only by important work and life tasks but also by binge watching seven seasons of a sitcom on Netflix.
2. We don’t know ourselves. Ultimately, we want to be known and wanted, and being perceived as busy inclines that the masses want and enjoy us being around. But the reality is that to always be active means that we are never still, and when we are never still we don't take the time to evaluate the specific purpose behind our investments of time.
Yes, there are times when we are truly busy - tax season, a newborn, or an application deadline all prompt immediate and sustained focus for an extended period of time. But these are only meant to be seasons.
There is unfortunately an underlying sense of shame to tell someone that work is going well, you have gotten off early this week, and you have a free weekend! We are all sprinting in circles without pausing to think about the real reason we tell everyone we are so b%@#.