Honoring Humanity In Everyday Life | About

Are You Too Busy?

To busy to notice the beauty.

I’m terribly sorry, but I’ve been busy this week. I have a daughter, you know. She needs taking care of. Besides that, I’m trying to build a web design business. That takes time. And while I’m at it, my email needs checking at least fifty times a day. Don’t ask why. It just does.

When I’m a little less busy, I’ll spend more time with people. Perhaps I could wander the streets and hear the stories of others.

When my schedule isn’t so hectic, I’ll spend more time writing. Maybe I will even write a book.

When I have more free time, I’ll take a break and rest. I may take a whole day to do nothing.

I don’t know when that will happen, but I’ll get there eventually.





Sometimes I wonder if my superpower is making excuses. I can always think of a reason for not doing something. But of all the excuses I come up with, few seem as dangerous, as deceitful, as the excuse that I’m too busy.

Being busy sounds reasonable. Work is good, right? As long as I’m productive, all is well.

But is it?

Who are you to say that I should rest?
I bet you that are not so over-stressed

What if I’m not built to be in perpetual motion?

The human body needs rest. The best time management advice I’ve received is to manage energy instead of time. That may mean taking time away from work to recharge.

In college, I often found myself up late with a paper due the next day. On those nights, I learned that I was better off going to bed, getting some rest, and finishing the paper in the morning rather than push through the night. Energized by the sleep, I finished the paper quicker than if I had worked all night.

Besides restoring energy, the mind processes life in those times of quiet. Many of my best solutions and insights come when I step back from the work for a bit.

This task is almost done
It’s almost done
Soon I can get going on the next one

What if I’m missing out on life?

When I’m busy, I’m focused on the tasks at hand. Complete one task. Get started on the next one. Repeat. But I’m too busy to notice the world around me.

I miss the beauty around me – blossoms in the trees, songs of the robin and warmth of the sunlight.

I miss the people in my life – their smiles, their love and their stories.

I miss the joy of my work – challenge, curiosity and growth.

Afraid? Who, me?
I assure you I’m too busy

What if I’m using busyness to hide?

Many worthwhile activities require pushing out of my comfort zone. Building relationships asks me to open myself to others. Creating demands hard work and facing fear. Stillness forces me to face myself, including my failures and weaknesses.

Going outside my comfort zone is scary. Busyness lets me keep doing what seems safe instead.

Is this activity what I should do?
Someday I’ll take the time to see if that is true

What if I’m forgetting to evaluate what I’m doing?

Accomplishing tasks can be beneficial, but not if they’re the wrong tasks. Lost in activity, I stop examining how I spend my time.

Before I know it, I loose sight of what I value. I let my dreams slip away.


So how do you make yourself less busy? How do you regain responsibility? Here’s what I’ve discovered.

Banish the phrase, “I’m too busy.” Don’t use it in any circumstances or for any reason. Instead, take ownership of your choices. Acknowledge the real motivations for your decisions.

Reduce unwanted commitments. Some you can drop right away. Others will take longer – but don’t use that as an excuse for not making a change.

Create habits of silence. Build time in your schedule for rest. I try to meditate every day, but for you it may be a different activity.

Fill your life with worthwhile activities. Do the work that scares you. Help people. Create value.

And if my experience is anything to go by, you’ll get more done.


PHOTO: To busy to notice the beauty. Chicago Botanic Gardens.

PS: If you ever catch me say, “I’m to busy,” I give you permission to hit me. I’m half serious about that.