Have we over-glorified being busy?

I cringe every time someone says it; “I am very busy.”

It is said with the tone the suggest being busy equates with being important. Or being busy is equivalent to getting things done, having a purpose in life.

It is as though the world has taught us that if you are not busy, you are a slacker, a loser, moving around aimlessly.

What is wrong with you? Get busy. Do something with your life.

Stop. Please just stop.

I am raising two boys, still driving my oldest to destinations that require highway driving and transporting my youngest to his various rehearsals and gigs. I am helping with homework, keeping the house clean, walking the dog, grocery shopping, running an online marketing agency, selling, managing a team, invoicing, developing strategies, pitching, writing, reading, being a wife, going to my husband’s gigs, nurturing my friendships, networking,  and keeping up with all the changes that happen on social media while maintaining my own social presence. I am also on the board of two nonprofits and I keep up with paying our monthly bills.

Oh – I also play games on Facebook. I grew up playing games with my family, and now that we live in different states, Facebook allows us to continue to play games with each other.

I am not busy.

I have a life to maintain, but rarely will you hear me say the words “I am busy.” I do not need to apply that label to prove that I am accomplished or accomplishing.

I have priorities. Sometimes I will say I am not available at a set time, but that is not the same as I am too busy. That means let’s look at the schedule and see where something falls on the list of priorities and when I can get to it.

You are never too busy to do something or meet someone, it is just down on the list of priorities.

Also, you do not need to have every moment scheduled. Deadlines are important for most things, but when you actually do the activity should be when you are inspired to – obviously before the deadline. It is also vital to learn how you work and how long something will take you.

When I have to write a social media strategy for a client I suggest it will take 2 weeks. The first 10 days is me thinking about it, jotting down notes, doing research, and thinking some more while I do other activities. Then the last 2 days I sit down and write the report. It is thorough and thought out, but it did not fill every moment of my two weeks. Yet having the time to let information present itself and ideas to connect provides inspiring new concepts for effective strategies.

The more relaxed a person is the more creative they can be. Ideas can flow. But you cannot be relaxed if you are always busy.

Also, ideas and inspiration come from the oddest places. Today I sat down at Starbucks. My intent was to work on a campaign strategy that needs to be presented in 2 days. However, the gentleman next to me decided he wanted to chat. Was I too busy to chat? No. Who knows what wisdom this man would offer me. I will never see him again. So I felt I needed to push my work aside and listen to his stories. Within 30 minutes he was on his way and I was inspired to write this post. I still have plenty of the weekend to work on the strategy which will be written quickly once I finish collecting all the ideas that are around me.

If I was too busy to collect new ideas, all my ideas would be recycled and the value I offer would be diminished.

Let’s change how we view the idea of being busy.

If you are too busy you might be unorganized. If you are too busy you might be uninspired. If you are too busy you might be trying to fill in a void that needs to be addressed. If you are too busy you might have anxiety.

If you are too busy, you might be missing out on all that life has to offer.