We are addicted to busy. Our work demands constant busyness. There is an illusion that if we are not busy busy busy then we are being unproductive.
It is a seriously flawed illusion.
The last few days I have been watching myself as my days are crammed from the moment I get up to the moment I go to bed with meetings and busyness. There is a never ending constant backlog of emails and reading to attend to. I was noticing a low grade feeling of exhaustion. Tinged with resentment.
On reflection it had nothing to do with the number of meetings, or real mental or physical exhaustion.
It was because there had been no time to pause, to breath, to contemplate. The value I get from taking time to write, plan and free think cannot be measured. I would wager that it is critical to anyone’s success and well being. (And what is success without well being?)
Many people I know have become so addicted to busy that they have completely lost touch with who they are. And many of these people are staying busy because the very act of stopping will open the flood gates of all kinds of thoughts and feelings, specifically the ones that will inform them that they have built a life that is incongruent with their deepest yearning.
Every human I know has a part of themselves that is nourished by beauty, silence, contemplation, reverie.
A life without this is not living. Or as Mary Oliver says far more eloquently than I, “Are you breathing just a little and calling it a life?”