Is busy a good thing?

Is busy a good thing? Is your busyness making you happy?

Have you noticed that everyone seems to be battling to schedule everything in? Why are we so busy, since when did we have so much to do? Technology is supposed to make our life easier, so why do we insist on filling every spare moment with something else to do instead of using our freed up time to just be? As technology moves forward and accessibility expands, society seems to demand more from us. So is busy a good thing?

When you last asked someone how they were, what was their answer? All too often the answer is ‘busy, but I couldn’t really tell you what with, just busy’. I know I’m guilty of saying this from time to time and it is as flippant as saying ‘just’ a SAHM. We are so busy that we don’t even have time to stop and reflect. We haven’t even thought about how we really feel.

When I ask ‘how are you?’ – I don’t want to know how busy you are, how many things you have to do, we are all busy, I want to know how you are within yourself. Are you happy? But when you answer ‘busy’ I wonder that if you are so busy does it mean that you are unwell? Are you being self destructive in having too many things on the go at once, not being fully present when it matters most?

I think that society is on the crest of a new way of life. We are desperately trying to figure out the magical balance between being and doing, between online and offline.

There is a buzz about ‘slowing down’ across all of the media at the moment. Why is everyone so stuck on ‘slow down’? Because by slowing down we can reflect on our answer to ‘how are you?’, we can make sure that the choices we are making and the things we are doing are making us happy. I’m not saying stop everything you are doing, just to reassess that what you are doing is contributing towards your happiness. Because happiness is enjoying the journey, not just the end point. So don’t rush to finish and if you cant enjoy the doing, is it really worth doing at all?

The other buzz doing the rounds is about making ‘me time’, but it seems that the only way people get this is to schedule it in amongst all the other things we are busy doing. The me time, is about making your self happy. But what if all your busy-ness is about happiness already?

So my advice for managing your busy-ness is to make sure that what you are busy with is contributing to your happiness and that you take the time to slow down and reflect on your happiness.

I know it isn’t easy, and it feels like you can’t drop all of the balls that you are busy juggling but maybe take the time to look at each ball and reflect on these points:

Don’t busy yourself with accomplishing things just to gain respect from someone else, this is a never ending search for fulfillment. Similarly you don’t get other peoples admiration for being busy, it doesn’t make you more important, especially if what you are busy with are the ‘wrong things’. Who do you respect more, someone who is always busy, or someone who is at peace, happy and content with where they are at? Make the choice as to which one you want to be.

Remember that you have a choice, despite the expectations pushed onto us, by ourselves or others. You can change and take control of your decisions. Just because everyone else is busy doesn’t mean that you need to keep up, besides, are they even busy with the right things? Are they finding happiness in the pursuit of all their busyness. And question your money goals against what will make you happy. So many people are busy earning enough money to buy things that make them happy, but never have enough time to enjoy them. Seems pointless to me. Remember when I mentioned that working too hard was one of the top regrets of the dying!

Some people thrive on busyness but everyone, with no exceptions, needs to take a break, even if it is just to enjoy the happiness your busyness gives you. Don’t hold such an excessively high opinion of yourself that you are needed and irreplaceable and can’t possibly step back and take a break. And if you avoid the quiet moments for fear of looking lazy, you don’t get it. Quiet is hard, and quiet can be scary, because it is in the quiet moments that you reflect and address any discontent.

Last but not least, let it go – you cannot do everything – full stop. While society bombards us with messages of urgency, selling every idea as beneficial to us, we need to be able to filter out the important things and prioritise them.

I suppose that this all comes down to mindfulness. Another buzz word at the moment, but a practice which dates back beyond the start of our days. This doesn’t necessarily mean meditation. If that works for you then great, but to me, it is about simply taking a moment to reflect on your state of being and to refocus your energy on your happiness. Which means trying to be present in each moment in your everyday life. This will lead to making decisions about your busyness. If your busyness is a conscious decision that contributes to your happiness then you are making the right choices because your busyness is serving you. If your busyness is a reaction to the demands of others than it is controlling you and it may be time to step back, slow down and be more mindful.

If you resonated with this be sure to sign up for my free monthly wallpaper, released on 1st of the month, the coming wallpaper is related to this.  

If you are interested in pursuing this further you might like to read Buddhism for Busy People (affiliate link) or perhaps The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (affiliate links).

So, how are you?
Is busy a good thing?
Are you busy with being happy?

And as an added bonus, I’ve been tagged a couple of times to share 10 things that make me happy, so here they are:
Is busy a good thing? Is your busyness making you happy? 10 things that make me happy.

1. coffee
2. good food
3. my family
4. sunshine & fresh air
5. travel
6. reading anything
7. learning something new
8. running
9. being creative
10. sharing the happiness, it’s contagious!

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