The Busy Olympics

Have you noticed how we wear busy-ness like a badge of honour? I can get sucked into the belief that busy equals productive and important too. It’s very much valued as something to be.

I’m not buying it anymore. I think being busy keeps us from focussing on the important things.

I don’t mean everyday living. Life is busy…I get it. But we can also contribute to this with activities and thoughts that aren’t serving us and then feel low of energy and burnt out. And often we are praised for it.

Watch for it. Observe yourself and others being busy but not engaged. Flitting about in distraction, procrastination and doing but not actually….doing. Being busy with little to no achievement. We are very good at being busy…and it can seem like it’s valuable and productive. It can feel worthy.

But…nah. I can’t anymore with the busy. I accept this is something I have allowed and I accept I don’t want it in my life anymore. I want to be productive and have an impact and be mindful and balanced. I don’t need to be busy to do that.

It means letting go of the idea that I can do all the things and achieve all the stuff all while not draining myself to a husk of a woman. Imagine! Imagine getting shit done and not feeling the need to be exhausted to qualify it.

I’ll never pretend to know what each of you has going on. We will all ebb and flow into times of being overstretched and I’m not about to list all the ways I am busy and stressed to prove I’m deserving of rest. I’m learning to accept these time and still find ways to give myself peace.

I think it starts with boundaries babies. We gotta work those boundaries in a big flippin way. And I’m talking with ourselves (though setting boundaries with others is beyond necessary and a post for another day). I’m setting boundaries for myself around my phone and my limited spare time. I’m setting aside time just for me and I’m giving myself permission to have that time.

I’m learning to say no. Not to the person but to the task or time. That also means letting go of the guilt when I choose to say no. I come first. And there’s no more shame in that. We should all come first. I have no interest in being a martyr.

Letting go of shoulds, coulds and to-do lists. I’m learning to pick one thing and do it well. I’m trying not to jump around to five different things and not doing any of them justice. I’m prioritising the to-do’s to one. And I’m not going to create a big production about that one thing. I’m just going to do it. I’ll do the one thing. Then I’ll do another. One step. Then another step. I can always take one step. Overwhelm is overrated.

I’m learning how I work best. I got a lot going on in my body on a monthly basis. There’s some hormone shit going on that I don’t even know where to start with. But what I can do? No more beating myself up if my energy levels are low. It is what it is. I can accept it and do what I can. I’m also more in tune with how my body works best. I work well in the morning so I try and do my stuff then…if I can. Because, of course, life. Things are never going to be my ‘ideal’ all the time. But I can try to take advantage of how I work best when I can.

On my day off a few days ago I had a couple of hours in the afternoon while TD was in nursery. I could have studied or written or gone for a walk or cleaned the house. I chose to read and nap. It’s what I needed. Now, I also needed a wee reminder from husband, but still…I did it and I enjoyed every bit of it. It did me the world of good (thank you husband).

On the days I go to the gym I make sure I get my workout in. I work hard and fast. I don’t need to busy myself about the place for ages to prove I did a good workout. I do this because TD is in the creche for two hours. I work hard for the first then sit in the cafe for the second. I write, listen to stuff and chill out. I have a coffee. I rest. I also only get there 2-3 times a week. It doesn’t serve me to try and cram more gym time in just now. Will this change? Maybe!

I no longer react the same way to folk describing their ‘busy’. I used to compare and assume they were somehow more organised, more important (better?) just because they were busy. I don’t want that. It doesn’t serve me. I’m in competition with no one so I can let those old beliefs go. I don’t need to feel stressed to feel important. I value feeling calm, rested and centred. And I bet I’ll actually get more of my important shit done.

I believe this is one the highest forms of self care.

What are some ways are you being busy but not engaged? What are some ways you can give yourself some space and freedom to create more of what you want?

A great place to start? Let go of what’s not serving you. I can not stress this enough. I mention it a lot. Those things just get in the way of living your life the way you want. They stifle your purpose, creativity, intuition, goals and peace. Seriously. Accept it as stuff that no longer serves you and release. Let it go.

Let. That. Shit. Go.

Here’s to being effective. To doing one thing then resting, recharging and going again. Here’s to being purposeful and balanced. Here’s to creating and thriving.

We got this.

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