How busy is busy?
Busy is a word we use when we don’t know what else to use. So is it the word we mean to use?
Busy can mean doing things around the house, running errands, parental duties, or other domesticated life chores.
Busy can mean your job/career has you doing things all day; phone calls, managing people, spreadsheets, customer care, driving all around, or other job related tasks.
We tend to think of busy as things we do. And sometimes we do a lot of things during our days. These things can physically exhaust us.
“How have you been?” A friend will ask.
“Busy,” we’ll respond, not listing the five things we had to multitask in the last hour and the million and a half things we still have to do.
Besides that, busy isn’t a feeling. “How have you been” and “What have you been doing” receive the same response, “Busy.” And don’t even get me started on “Fine” as an answer.
The truth for me is that I do a lot at work and home. Tasks are not happening all the time, yet, I feel like I’m so busy. And I am. In my head. I am thinking all the time about what I’ve accomplished but mostly about what I still have to accomplish.
I’m busy most of my days thinking, not necessarily doing. During my down time my mind is going over things past, present and future. Rarely is my mind not pouring over something I did or didn’t do. Or should do.
I think I am busy not doing things most days, but I think so much about doing things that I’ve tricked my brain into believing I’m am continuously on the move. Our brains don’t know the difference between what is actually happening and what is only happening in our head.
This isn’t always a negative thing. Some of the best athetes will practice visualization for running plays, golf and tennis swings or throwing a ball. Writers visualize whole stories before even writing a single word. Musicians will visualize playing their instrument while sitting in traffic or standing in the grocery line. Fingers moving along an imaginary fret or keyboard.
Those are meditative practices that have been studied and proven to enhance a person’s performance. Watch the movie The Pianist to see what I’m talking about.
Our minds are always working, either for us or against us. We can choose to feed it with all kinds of things. Otherwise, it will feed on itself and the result is usually bad. Negative thinking will creep in and set up a home and then slowly eat away at everything until you are racked with despair, crippling anxiety and no self-worth.
I’ve been there. Many times.
Our minds are busy every second of every day. That’s why we will tell people we’re busy but not be able to give those internal examples about why we are exhausted from doing so much. We have convinced our brains and our brains in return have convinced us that we have been doing so many things.
I haven’t written a post in over a month. The past two weeks I’ve been busy thinking about how I haven’t posted in a long time. I didn’t realize just how long it had been until I looked it up this morning.
I’ve had doing tasks and thinking tasks over this past month. I’ve also had down time where I could have written something.
I was busy not writing. I was busy telling my brain reasons why I couldn’t write. I told my brain I was doing so much and had some much more to do. So my brain believed it and in return convinced me to believe it. What a lovely team of procrastinating liars we are, my brain and I. The perfect pair to never get anything done.
So, here is a post. When is the next post?
That will depend on what my brain and I decide to convince each other.