On Being Busy
Time Management. Balance. Downtime. Going off the grid. It goes by many names, but no matter how we define the elusive topic of taking a break, I still haven’t mastered the art of it.
It’s not for lack of trying—I’ve read just about every inspirational quote, short story, self-help book, Facebook post and Inc and Entrepreneur Magazine article about how to step back from work and relax, but hey, I’m human, and still I struggle. It’s hard to give up that control.
I know I should shut my phone off when I’m home, give my email a break once in a while—heck, I probably shouldn’t even be typing this blog post during the weekend, but here we are. I’m going to be “quiet” as soon as I finish this thought, promise. Well, after I get to that one other thing I have to do...
Keeping busy is in my blood. I was brought up in a hardworking family; my parents worked their full-time jobs while running a family business during evenings and weekends. It wasn’t unusual for us to be “playing” on the floor of our family’s store and restaurant while our parents worked to provide for us. When I grew up, I married a man who was brought up with the same work ethic as my own, and his family still runs a successful family business today.
It is not unusual that my husband and I will put in an 8-10 hour workday, come home, have dinner and wander off to our respective home offices to continue working. We have a close family of four and I think we have been good parents so far.
Generally, I am so tired when I lay down at night that I don’t put a lot of thought into how I could have the day better, perhaps taken things a bit slower, but occasionally a desire to stop and think does cross my mind as I begin the the next day; or in the middle of the night when I wake up in a conversation with myself. Every now and then I am stopped suddenly by information of a loved one’s passing, a tragic accident where someone’s life has ended too soon, or a friend who I have lost to illness. I pause for a rare moment of reflection and appreciation, and then I move on. Life—it just does this. It just keeps going and going—you’re the one who has to make time to pause.
As many of us struggle with this act of “balance” in our lives, I want to encourage my fellow friends to join me in “trying” to create more space between the “busy” and the sacred downtime. Perhaps if we nudge each other a little, hold each other accountable for our “me-time,” we will begin to see results in each other.
This week, my family will be on vacation together. We will be on a boat for the duration, just the four of us. I am challenging myself to refresh my soul, keep myself unplugged, and stay present with my family. I want to embrace the quiet and let go of the worry that a work opportunity will pass me by if I am not paying attention—because there are more important things to pay attention to. And if I don’t start paying attention to those things, the best opportunities in life will surely pass me by. Wish me luck!!
Have a blessed day – xo Lynette