Being busy is a good thing, right?

Being busy is a good thing, right?

Several years ago I was talking with a business coach and I was telling her how busy I always was and she said to me “Are you busy on the right things though?”. The statement stopped me in my tracks and in one instant I saw my world in a whole different way. Up until that moment I had worn “busy” as a badge of honor. In my mind busy = success. I was wrong and I’ve had to learn over the years what real success means and how to balance my time. Earlier this year I wrote the following:

People wear “I’m busy” like it’s a badge of honor. Let me share a little secret with you…it’s not. We over book and then wonder why we stress. We say yes to everything and then resent the people we say yes to. We cram in all these inconvenient and non-essential things and then tell our family that we just don’t have time because “we’re SO busy”. It’s good to work and it’s good to serve but it’s not good to neglect. I’m taking a vow to block out time for the things that really matter this year. I will get way more accomplished by being intentional than by being “busy”.

As we’re getting ready to close out the year I’ve been reflecting on this idea again and evaluating how well I’ve done in my pursuit to be more intentional. In some areas I haven’t been as intentional as I would have liked but in others I’ve done really well. I’ve learned that I am much less stressed when I focus on the following:

  1. Being present in the moment. We own a successful business outside of just running our blog and I love that business. I love being able to support and answer questions for the people in that business. What I found though was that my family felt constantly neglected because I couldn’t just be present with them and the people I was trying to help weren’t getting my full attention either because I was feeling guilty that I was trying to be with my family and I was answering business questions. I finally was able to put away my phone and focus on my family when I’m with them and also set time aside to focus on my business without feeling guilty that my family was being neglected. It takes commitment and it doesn’t happen overnight (at least it didn’t for me) but if you try long enough you will succeed!
  2. Saying yes isn’t always the best decision. I once heard a presentation that spoke of things in our life being either good, better, or best. The idea has stuck with me for over 5 years and I try to measure the opportunities in my life to each one of those classifications. Is it Good? Better? or Best? If we are functioning in the zone of “It’s Good” then we are running on fumes all the time and are doing ourselves and those around us a great disservice. I once had a friend that was trying to help someone that didn’t really want to help themselves. I told her “If you want permission to stop, you have it” (not that I needed to be the one to give it to her but sometimes we feel like we can’t give it to ourselves). I told her that every minute she spends trying to help this person was a minute that she was taking away from her family. She was so relieved at the idea of being able to let this distraction go. While it’s good to help others, it is just as important to make sure we aren’t doing it to the detriment of others. I can’t sign up to be part of every training in my business, to mentor everyone on my team, to volunteer for every dinner opportunity in my church family, or to take every phone call or email that comes in but each time I say no it’s because ultimately I’m saying “Yes” to the thing that is really “Best”. 
  3. It’s important to live my purpose. We all have something greater we can give to the world. Each of us has a gift that only we can give. When we overburden ourselves with the things that are non-essential it takes away from the thing that is essential…the thing that brings us JOY! So many people get caught up in the day-to-day life that they stop living. We weren’t meant to work hard to just pay our bills. We are supposed to make an impact, to touch the lives of others in our own way, and to find Joy in all of it. Being busy is a distraction that keeps us from living up to our potential.

Making changes is never easy but there is a way to overcome the idea that busy is a badge of honor and that you are successful if you can’t fit one more thing into your day. The biggest way to focus on the important things is to get rid of or limit the non-important things. Here are some things to consider as you’re evaluating what is important and what isn’t.

  • How much time do you spend on social media?
  • How much time do you spend in front of your television?
  • How much time do you spend in front of your computer?
  • How much time do you spend away from your family?
  • How much time do you spend on hobbies?
  • How much time do you spend at home?
  • How much time do you spend with your children and/or spouse?
  • How much time do you spend serving others?

As with anything in life, moderation is key. Too much of anything is not a good thing. I’m not saying to never watch TV and to stay off of your computer. Rather what my challenge to you is to evaluate where you spend your time and listen for the “I’m too busy” or the “I’m so busy” coming out of your mouth. I’m not terribly busy at this point in my life and that’s only because I don’t want to be. Busy isn’t something I pride myself on being. Neither am I not busy. I do have commitments and things I’m pursuing. The thing that distinguishes it all for me is that I am focused on my purpose, always striving to find the best use of my time, and most importantly when I find that best thing and I tap into my purpose I try to be present in the moment and find Joy in the journey whether that’s playing with my family at the beach, writing blog articles, or growing my business.

I would love to hear your thoughts! Please leave me a comment below. 

Christy (aka Sunshine Mama) is the wife to 1 (amazing husband), mother of 3 (wonderful children), lover of health, wellness, the beach, and sunshine. She is passionate about living an inspired life and loves to inspire others to live life at their fullest. You can find her online educating others on how to live a more natural lifestyle, especially on how to use essential oils…or hanging out at the beach.

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