The Culture of Busy-ness
How many times have you told yourself, ‘I’d love to be able to _____, but I just don’t have enough time’? How many hours have you spent bemoaning the fact that we don’t have enough time to do ______, instead of just DOING it?!
Our motto for the type of meditation I teach is "Do less, accomplish more; Do least, accomplish most; Do nothing, accomplish everything". This is exactly what we want for meditation. Zero effort. Yes, it does sometimes apply to the outside world, but our technique is meant for householders, not monks. That means, we all still have jobs, families, and responsibilities, and we aren't trying to become aimless, goal-less, unemployed, or destitute. But it is a nice way to think about life in terms of 'over-efforting' and not spinning our wheels about being busy. We often over-complicate things.
What we put our attention on grows. So, if we put our attention on how busy we are, all we're going to do is feel, and actually 'be' busy. It's one thing if we own a store and want lots of customers (the good kind of busy). But there's another type of busy that implies 'time scarcity' and fears of not having enough time.
Sometimes the narrative we tell ourselves about how busy we are actually adds to our stress. We are getting stressed about being busy, instead of just doing all the things we need to do. How much time do we think about how much work we have to do? Or about how little time we have for fun things? And how many times does that fear/panic leak into our 'off' time, so we end up feeling guilty about taking time off and not even enjoying that? It's just doubling the amount of stress for no reason.
My advice (and trust me, it's advice I can take myself!!):
1. NOTHING is as important or as urgent as we think it is. Let’s stop taking it all so seriously and allow ourselves to pause and enjoy.
2. It's ok to say no to things. The world *will* get by without us, even if that seems impossible!
3. Practically- set aside 2-3 times per day for social media, and LEAVE IT ALONE for the rest of the day. Also- stop hitting the snooze button!
4. When we have a lot of things going on, let’s do our best to remember to take it one thing at a time. This will help to minimize the 'stress about the stress' and keep us performing at our best in each moment.
Try to keep this in mind the next time we are spinning our wheels about time management. Shift the story we tell ourselves about being busy. We ALL have time for family, friends, work, play, and self-care.
Learn more about "Doing Nothing and Accomplishing Everything" at an Intro to Conscious Health Meditation class!