That bright, shiny piece of worthiness slapped in the middle of my chest: I AM BUSY.
Recent history has given us some incredible stuff: the Jimmy Fallon/Justin Timberlake combo, the giant movie popcorn bucket, self checkout at the grocery, chocolate covered bacon. And somewhere along the timeline, our culture started feeding us the line that the busiest person is winning at life – and I got served, big time.
Busyness gives us a way to show we can do it all, have it all and please everyone, all the time. Remind me again…why does this seem like something we want to do? Nonetheless, we slap on that badge for the world to see.
The Phases of The Busy Badge Wearing:
1. You wear it proudly on your chest. That baby is big and bright so all can see. But, just to be safe, you go ahead and tell everyone that it’s there. How have you been? your friend asks. Ohmygosh, sooooo busy! you reply.
2. You start to believe you are bankrupt on time, forgetting all days have exactly 24 hours. You start to think your time is more valuable than other’s because you are so busy.
3. You are feeling warn out and disillusioned. Wasn’t being busy supposed to be awesome? It now makes perfect sense why rockstars do cocaine to keep up with their schedule.
4. You stand alone in your kitchen at 10:00PM, scarfing an entire pretzel roll dripping with bacon cheddar ranch dip, to help process all the busyness from today and all the busyness that awaits tomorrow.
There are seasons of life when a certain amount of busyness cannot be avoided. But the majority of the time, it is self-inflicted. Staying busy leaves me feeling very disconnected from myself. Not having time to be still leaves me restless. Sometimes, I need to just be. I think this is the reason many people choose to stay busy, because it is an easy distraction from feeling. They think if they are busy then their life means something or they have something to talk about in conversation or perhaps that idea of sitting with their feelings is just too scary to bare, so busyness becomes their self-preservation.
Full disclosure: I started “being busy” because I saw everyone else doing it. I believed the company line and thought busy was glamorous. Turns out busy and glamour don’t suit me. Even being busy with (too much) fun can wear a sister out.
I believe my time and my schedule are sacred. While I am tethered to the desire to cram as much living into my life as possible, I am learning to apply that illusive concept of balance. That means sometimes saying “no” and being OK with not “doing something.” It means taking time to sit with myself and allow the moment to be just that: the present moment. Balance means leaning into the present moment and feeling whatever surfaces, knowing I have the courage to handle those feelings. It means knowing what my schedule needs and choosing the things that bring me joy and fun.
So you’re probably asking yourself, where can I get pretzel rolls and bacon cheddar ranch dip? (Trader Joe’s. You’re welcome.) Eat a giant helping and think of me. Think of me cheering you on as you burn your busy badge, jumping up and down next to the fire of your freedom. Let’s stop glorifying busy and take time to soak up moments.
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