Being busy and stressed was my second "name", until a serious illness made me realise that my body did not appreciate what I was putting it through. Only then I started to embrace the slower pace of life and pay more attention to the important things in my life on the whole. Nowadays, work life harmony – timing, energy, intentions, mentally and physical health are in sync with no stress or force- is a thing I strive for.
When you Keep Saying You are Busy… What is that Actually Telling You?
Have you come across people who, the first thing, tell you how busy they are. There seems to be not enough hours in their day. I know this person – because I personally lived it. I was one who used to constantly think and live the "I Am Busy" life, day in and day out; I constantly felt that fun and joy was being sucked out of my day and everything became a chore. Oh.. I won't even mention how it escalated to stress.
Imagine when you are in that busy and stressed mindset, what energy are you exuding? How are your actions and inactions affecting your loved ones around you, especially your young children? Will you be yelling at them? "Bark" at them to quickly get in the car, "hurry up".. "quickly"…
Are you hearing yourself right now?
I cringed every time I thought about it… it was not until I took the step to improve my well being through coaching that I became aware of my behaviour and the many causes behind them.
Being busy is not an excuse, it is a habit.
Nowadays, being busy seems like a norm. Most times when I ring up my friends, their common reply is "I am really busy…" or " I am so busy, it is unbelievable"… to the point that people believe that being very busy is part of who they are. It is like becoming a norm… and not being busy means you are out of the league, or not achieving, or not moving forward in life…
Why do you think people are so busy right now?
Why being busy is becoming a norm?
Could it be because…
- they feel valued and loved for being a high achiever and moving forwards; or
- they don’t know what to do with the free time; or
- they feel guilty for not filling up every second of their day.. imagine what you would do with your children's time if you have this mindset;
- they are hiding…the silence and quietness cause them to be vulnerable to feelings that they are trying to avoid or numb out, i.e. any painful relationships, sadness or unhappiness in the family etc.;
- culturally employees need to be seen to be busy, and will only leave the office when their manager or senior management have left the office, otherwise they will be seen as being unproductive or lazy; or
- we have a lack of personal boundaries; or
- we have become so accustomed to task-oriented actions and have forgotten to allocate some time to relax?
My own journey
This is a very personal journey for me as well. When I started taking stock of the projects on hand, I had to decide which one I wanted to pursue and which one I needed to let go. When the decisions were made, it was like a heavy weight lifted off my shoulders and chest, and from then on I had re-learnt how to stake stock of my life and to reclaim my sanity. This is when I really started to notice the whole world around me and to reconnect to the people around me. I then realised what I have been missing out on.
Through the coaching, I was becoming more aware of my mindset, my thinking, and how my reactions to situations and especially to my children affected everyone. I took steps to journal, to re-program my mindset. I took steps to consciously to be more aware of my communication with my children and the people around me, and be more observant of their actions and listening to what they hadto say.
I learned to quieten my mind through journaling, exercising, learning to feel more and to embrace the quietness of my life. When my mind was quiet, I was able to think easily and more productively.
Being busy is not something that you would choose to do, it is something that you do without consciously being aware of it.
So if you are ready to claim some sanity back in your life… here is what I would like to you do. Please answer the following questions in your journal:
- Take out a pen and paper, and write out the things that are important to you, i.e. family, career, society etc.
- What do you really want in life?
- What do you stand for: your values, your beliefs.
- How do you want your life to look like? For example: Do you want to spend more time with your children? Do you want to travel? How would you do that?
I hope this will give you some ideas on how to claim back some of your precious time. Start setting your boundaries and start to noticing your life and what is going on around you, and how precious your family is.
If you are keen on meditation, here is a link to an excellent meditation by Burt Goldman – https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2FuJUUA1CcY
Have a connected day with your family.