Are you busy being busy? Life is too short to be spending our days on Autopilot and not engaged in what we are doing. We need to BE in the moment and enjoy how we are spending our time. Have you noticed “I’m busy!” is quickly becoming the new “Hello – how are you”? It seems whenever I run into someone or talk to a client and ask how things are going the reply is “super busy” or “hectic” or some variation on that theme. Depending on whom I am talking to and where, I often ask “busy doing what?” and the common response is “just a lot of stuff”. I realize I do the same thing and I am trying to stop. As the motivational speaker Michael Altshuler says, “The bad news is time flies. The good news you’re the pilot”. So it is time to take control and get above the endless to do and should do’s on our list because life is too uncertain to be spending your days just busy doing “stuff”.
I am not suggesting relaxing on the beach. I am advocating being busy with a purpose. What that means is simply doing a job or tasks that matter and that YOU are making the choice to do them and not just going through the motions. For example, our cellphone bill comes every month and we need to pay it. However, there are many other things we do on a daily or weekly basis that we can make a choice about – from saying Yes to another work project, to signing up for the same task as last year, or accepting a volunteering opportunity you are not passionate about. Time is precious and we need to be filling up our days and times with meaningful to-do’s. Yes, some things like the laundry need to get done but for many other tasks you can decide. Life is moving at a faster pace for all of us and slowing down may not be an option, but how we spend our time is still our choice.
Take a moment to think about how you are managing your time and what you did today. What was the one thing you most enjoyed? Ask yourself if you can do that more often? Likewise for the task you don’t like, can you do it less often, get rid of it, or find a way to be more effective? Try it and the next time you answer “I’m busy!” you will have a better sense of what you have been busy spending your time doing.