For some reason, being busy has become the default setting in most of our lives. We all seem to be constantly rushing around between our kids’ timetables, work commitments and appointments, not to mention getting the shopping done, visiting the grandparents, attending schoolmeetings and sports events and remembering that we actually do still have friends. The fact that we carry our phones with us wherever we go also contributes to our being constantly “available” and standing at attention so to say. There was a time when we respected those that are constantly busy whether it was for work or with their personal life, but nowadays it has simply become the norm.
We don’t always realise how our disease of being busy is affecting those closest to us, our children especially often pick up on our distance, lack of attention to them, constant rushing to the next activity, event or meeting, and both parent and child end up becoming agitated and irritable because of it. Partners start living past each other and forget who they are married to. Fortunately, being busy is a man-made ‘disease’ and we’ll take a look at some of the ways in which we can hit the pause button on our lives.
Don’t See it As a Badge of Honour
Instead of viewing being busy as some kind of achievement or expectation that you must fulfil, rather understand the toll it is taking on your life. Being busy can make us feel like we aren’t in control and don’t get enough time to do the things we enjoy. When being busy starts to be seen as a disease instead of an achievement, we will also treat it differently.
Work vs Busy Work
Redefine what it means to be busy. We tend to use it as an umbrella term for everything from driving to the office, sitting in a meeting and preparing dinner for the family. By categorising your life into different ‘types’ of busy, it will help you feel in control, and empower you to manage your life according to these ‘sections’. Spending time around the dinner table and in the kitchen can become a time when family members connect, talk and laugh. Taking the dogs for a walk can become a time to take in nature and clear your thoughts – something to look forward to. Driving the kids to school can quickly turn into game or story time.
Being busy doesn’t always mean that we are productive, it’s about trying to meet expectations that we think exist. By redefining what work and being proactively busy means to you, you will learn to treasure your time with yourself and your family and start scheduling these moments as you would a meeting with a client.
Practicing mindfulness through meditation is a great way to be able to gather your thoughts and learn to live in and treasure the moment. When you fully experience the present, past and future losing its power, you will take in what is actually happening around you and most importantly who you are sharing this moment with. Try practicing mindfulness and meditation as a family, it has great benefits.
These are just a few ways in which you can start fighting the busy disease. We’d love to hear how you tackle this problem in your home. Share your tips and tricks in the comment section below.