We’re busy. All. The. Time. Even when we’re not busy.
If that makes any sense to you, then you’re certainly experiencing the same phenomenon as me.
These days, being ‘busy’ is the modern-day curse. Or luxury depending how you look at it.
When I started this blog back in May, I didn’t quite realise how much time it would actually take. That’s not a problem, because I love doing it, but it does seem to add to the pressure of another thing to make time for.
Work has been hectic and I’ve been staying late, I’ve booked myself in to see different groups of friends and said ‘yes’ to various outings all at the same time… and it just feels like I have no time to tidy up and keep on top of my blog. I’M JUST SO BUSY, YOU GUYS.
Except that I’m not. Not really. I still found time to watch ‘I’m a Celebrity Get Me Out of Here’ most evenings and that’s one hour I could have spent writing. And that’s okay, we’re allowed to have downtime. But it just feels like I have no time because my brain is still whirring away. There is a pressure to always be ‘on’, so relaxation time is spent worrying about what we’re not doing.
More time, so much more to do.
In fact, we have more leisure time than we used to. On average, we work less than they did in the 60s. Yet, with so much available to us, the wide variety of choice and the overwhelming amount of information, everything seems hectic. Thanks to technology it can also seem as if time is going quicker and so it feels like we have too much to do in the time we have.
Competition and status.
If I slip into a conversation: ‘oh I’ve been so busy recently’, in stead of a question about what I’ve got going on, I’ll be met with a dismissive ‘oh yeah, me too!’. This could be a competitive, or simply, a statement of fact: we’re all busy. And we’re all guilty of it.
Studies suggest that people between the ages of 21 and 34 have become workaholics or want to appear to be. And the below quote suggests why:
A full Outlook calendar seems to have replaced the sports car as the new status symbol. Being busy means you’re important, needed, valued.
The busier you are, the more important you are? There are whole studies dedicated to the relationship of busyness with status. See: ‘Ugh, I’m So Busy’: A Status Symbol for Our Time.
FOMO and learning to say no.
“Oh I have to do abc…”, “I absolutely need to get xyz done…” unless these things will directly impact us right there and then, like paying a bill, we probably don’t HAVE TO do half the things we say we do. I know, easier said than done!
You know I mentioned how many things I have going on at one time? Well, that’s my own fault. I wouldn’t be so busy if I didn’t keep organising my schedule like that. You get that ‘Fear Of Missing Out’, and you want to be a part of what’s going on. When you’re not a part of it, you see everyone else’s busy timelines on social media. There you have it. You’re busy looking at everyone else being busy and you’re worried that they’re busier than you and you’re not busy enough! Phew… It’s just exhausting thinking about it.
There is no shame in having to say no. And sometimes we should.
There is a pressure to always be ‘on’, so relaxation time is spent worrying about what we’re not doing.
Time to switch off.
The reason we’re SO BUSY, or feel busy is that nowadays, we are never disconnected. Unlike never before, there is always a constant connection to the rest of the world via internet, phones etc etc. Technology is so ingrained into our lives, that we can be connected by work, friends, companies trying to sell us things and so on, at literally any time of day.
So, even when we’re not actually doing anything, we’re so aware of everything that’s going on, that we don’t feel like we’ve had a break.
There is no room or time to exhale and let go of everything. I’m often multi-tasking so much, that when I’m left to myself, I feel restless.
Let’s all just try to chill out. Let’s relish in not being busy when we have the chance. Give me Netflix and chill any day. And switch off that social media!
(She says, whilst tweeting this out to the world!)