If you wear a badge of honor labeled “busy” as if it is a status symbol, you are doing it wrong.
Stop glorifying being busy as if it makes you more important, more successful, more worthy or better than others. The only thing it makes you more of is unhealthy, lonely and a participant of a self-guided ego trip.
Glamorizing juggling a thousand different projects may make you feel like you’ve arrived but all it really is indicative of is that you have no idea what your true values and purpose are. Saying no to things that are completely unrelated to your personal and professional goals is a sign of emotional intelligence and great time management.
There is a Greek Island named Ikaria. The residents there live profoundly long lives. They stay up late, sleep in and just because, they take naps in between. They don’t wear watches, have no concept of time or money and live within a community where the philosophy is “we, not me”. As a result, they reach the age of 90 at two and a half times the rate of Americans, suffer little dementia or depression, and live much longer before succumbing to cancers or cardiovascular disease. No one on Ikaria responds “I’m just so busy” when asked “how are you?” In fact it is nicknamed the island where people forget to die. Plane ticket please!
If you are continually emotionally manipulated by the demands of others unrelated to what you truly want and desire - it’s time to stop the insanity. Here’s how:
1. Redefine Success: Hint: it has nothing to do with accumulation of stuff, accolades, letters after your name or sphere of influence in society.
2. Be generous: want more time? Give your time away to causes that align with your heart and watch how life opens up.
3. Stop allowing others to dictate your choices and love yourself enough to control your own heart.
4. Find solitude: if you don’t like being alone with yourself, who else will? Prayer and quiet allows us to stay in alignment with less stress.
So am I crazy? Maybe. Ask the team I lead if they mind being done with work by 3:00 pm every Friday (we are working our way to finish by noon). I spend time alone often, in fact, planning a vacation alone to Siesta Key in June. I have no problem saying no to things that would make me look important but will absolutely not get me closer to personal or professional goals. I don’t do busy, because being too busy is just not cool.