The Glorification of Busy

Someone please tell me that they also talk to and shout at their computer. Most of the time it is in anger but sometimes it is in agreement. The other day, I had one of those days when things are put right in front of my face and dropped into my lap without me even searching for them. I came across three articles about being busy and there were a few points in each article that had me nodding my head and proclaiming, “Yes! Thank you!”

It’s that time of year again when everyone is suddenly busy. Children are back at school and their schedules are packed with extra-curricular activities. Parents are shuttling children back and forth to activities, working, running errands, Bible studies and small groups have picked back up, and the weather is dipping below 98 degrees which in Texas means it’s time to get some work done outside after being confined to the indoors for four months. Schedules are filling up and a lot of this busyness of life is brought upon ourselves. We fill our schedules with things to “fill us” and round us out as a person. Work, classes at the gym, Bible studies, yard work…all good things, but like all good things, when not in check,  can spiral out of control and take over our lives. I’ll be the first to admit that I fall into this trap year after year every September. The world tells me I need to fill up my time with things to keep me busy. In fact, picking one good thing to participate in over another good thing often leads to guilt and self doubt but I have been through enough Septembers to realize that I can’t do it all.

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We are all so busy these days that’s it’s the first thought that pops into our head when someone asks how we’re doing because we think that if we are busy we are important, or needed, or loved. We find our self-worth in what we think our busyness says about who we are as a person. Y’all the world is lying to us. Being busy isn’t what life is about.

Stop the glorification of busy.

Friends, life is about so much more than being busy with things that take us away from people and relationships. It’s about conversations that happen and relationships that are built through those conversations when you take the time to slow down and really engage and enter into another person’s life. The less we glorify being busy, the more time and opportunity we will have to really get to know each other. I know for myself, as an introvert, time spent with someone is so important because it takes me a long time to get to know people and let them know me. Not filling up my schedule requires a constant effort so that I can make time to get to know people.

Take time to stop and and be still. Resting requires active participation in which you stop doing and just be. The world has told us that unless we are doing something, we are not being productive, and if we are not productive, we are not contributing to society. But I disagree. It is in moments of rest that I have my greatest epiphanies and eureka moments.

Idleness is not just a vacation, an indulgence or a vice; it is as indispensable to the brain as vitamin D is to the body, and deprived of it we suffer a mental affliction as disfiguring as rickets. The space and quiet that idleness provides is a necessary condition for standing back from life and seeing it whole, for making unexpected connections and waiting for the wild summer lightning strikes of inspiration — it is, paradoxically, necessary to getting any work done. – The ‘Busy’ Trap by Tim Kreider

I hope you take time to slow down this week and enjoy a conversation with a friend, that cup of coffee with a book, or a little quiet solitude.

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2 thoughts on “The Glorification of Busy

  1. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had nearly every one of these thoughts myself. Sometimes it seems that I’m incapable of doing just one thing at a time, much less no things at one time! Crave those moments of rest you are talking about!

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