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Wednesday, December 19, 2007


Busy Bodies

Why is everybody so busy?

It's what I hear the most from friends, family, even strangers.

"We've been so busy lately" has become the standard answer to the question, "How are you?"

The statement is often preceded by a heavy sigh. Nobody seems to like being so busy, but they've apparently given up trying to change the situation.

A friend recently told me that he feels like he's under water, drowning in a sea of job responsibilities. Yet, many of the activities that he's taken on at work are purely extracurricular. As if he needs to be not just busy, but busier.

I don't see the point to living life like that. Are we only on this planet to fill our days with busy work? Or do we think that the busiest person wins some sort of special award at the end of their life?

I've heard people say, "I'm so busy I don't even have time to think."

What kind of message does that send to our children?

We're in danger of raising a generation of kids who won't know how to just sit and ponder the world around them. Maybe they'll be too busy to care.


Blogger brettdl said...

It is frustrating. If I want to "slow down" by going hiking, I have to drive 30 miles to get there.

6:41 AM  
Blogger Stephanie said...

amen. AMEN.

6:52 AM  
Anonymous said...

I feel much the same way, which is one of the reasons I left the world of corporate employment. However, I find myself slipping into the same "busy" mindset even when I'm self-employed. Sometimes I think it has more to do with setting goals and reaching goals (no-matter how insignificant) and its effect on our image of self-worth.

8:40 AM  
Blogger Phil said...

I think it has more to do with setting goals and reaching goals (no-matter how insignificant) and its effect on our image of self-worth.

Choosydad, I think you hit the nail on the head. We live in a society that views busy people more favorably than those who live their life in the slow lane. I experience that all the time when I'm just hanging out with my kids. People are shocked that I'm not trying to make as much money as I can, and not pursuing personal accolades. Society says I'm weird because I want to make memories with my children, not memories with my co-workers.

9:03 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Mac said...

What a very insightful and timely post. The times we live in and our ever growing technology highway feed into the equation. Growing up I can recall that to have to drive 15 or 20 miles to visit someone was very unusual. We stayed and played and worked in a much smaller circle. I walked everywhere ... to school, girl scouts ... or rode a bike. Christmas was not such a big production either. We didn't even put up a tree until a few days before Christmas ... if we were without funds, Christmas Eve when the trees were cheap ;)

9:04 AM  
Blogger Dan said...

Sorry, I'd leave a comment but I'm too busy.

1:20 PM  
Blogger Jeff said...

I'm not busy, everybody else is just taking too long.

3:03 PM  
Blogger Sparky said...

I have felt like I am on a roller coaster I can't get off. I have implemented a pajama day at my house. The idea is not necessarily to stay in pjs all day but not to committ to getting dressed for anything else but us. We read, write, play games, watch old movies, hike, picnic, walk, or whatever. But we do it together and at a pace that makes the day ramble not race to a conclusion.

Little moments are so important, thanks for the post.

11:51 PM  
Blogger Phil said...

Pajama day is a great idea. It takes away the temptation to run errands or clean the garage.

With a two-week Christmas break coming up, I think we might have to have a few of those pajama days.

12:00 AM  
Blogger brettdl said...

We often have pajama days on days off and the weekends.

7:06 AM  
Blogger Whit said...


9:17 AM  
Anonymous Alice at Wintersong said...

A very thoughtful post. Unfortunately, when I look around me at all the teens (adults as well), I'd say we've already raised a generation (or 2?) who don't know how to sit and ponder about life to figure out who they are, and what they think about the world.

8:15 AM  
Anonymous Alice at Wintersong (again!) said...

(Oops! I should have previewed before posting!)What I was referring to were all those people on cell phones all the time unable to appreciate either being alone anything else around them.

8:17 AM  
Anonymous Chris said...

I've been thinking a lot about this too lately. I hear myself saying that all the time, and I always feel like I'm supposed to be doing something. On the rare occasion that I find myself with nothing to do, I can only sit still for a few minutes before I'm back up looking for something else to tend to. Why is that?

3:44 PM  
Anonymous Scooby said...

if everyone would smoke weed we wouldn't even be having this dialogue

3:28 PM  

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