“Huh, very busy dear, just don’t know how time is flying.”
How recently have you heard similar answers when you’ve asked someone, “How are you doing ?” Some people are busy, extremely busy all the time.
Personally I don’t prefer using the word ‘busy’; it is a negative word. To be honest, time is never a constraint, we are. I may defer replying a message by sometime or may not have answered a call but will definitely make time to get back to them. I will never say, “I was busy”. It may be rude to the person who wanted my time.
Being busy has become a status symbol. In reality what ‘being busy’ means is saying, “I am important to me“, “I don’t have time to spare for you”, “You are not my priority”. It won’t give a pleasant experience for the receiver. A person can be occupied for a day or month, for many months – but if we are telling others that we are busy, we are bragging. I really feel sorry when I hear someone saying ‘too busy’. In the right sense they are mismanaging time.
On the other hand, for some reason a lot of people think, if we say that we have time, it may be perceived as we are not doing anything productive. This is true to some extent. I have had people ask me, “Others are very busy, can you handle this?” Just because I am making myself available does not essentially mean I don’t have anything else to do. If I feel the need I will take time out of my schedule to be there for you. When people take this for granted, compare my life with others and say that all others are busy, it feels like a slap on the face. Isn’t this mean? We have to change our attitude towards “busy”; it is not a good state to be in.
If I take my own case, I am neither busy nor lazy, but there are certain tasks which I always try to keep towards the end, simply because I am not interested. When I don’t pay required attention to those tasks on time, pressure builds up and eventually I will do it. This may not be precisely procrastination because not all the tasks fall into this bucket, only specific ones.
Job, family, kids, friends, hobbies, passions – definitely all of these are very important, also demand considerable amount of our time. We all have the same 24 hours and similar responsibilities. Over time if we are unable to manage, we are not planning our day in a way that we can efficiently meet expectations. In short, we are lazy to plan or execute. Our efficiency gets hampered, we multitask, miss our deadlines, we are setting up ourselves to fail. This phase needs an introspection.
A popular notion is “Busy is the new lazy”, at first this might sound harsh, but once we understand what it really means, it makes sense. Successful people are never busy. When I read autobiographies, I often am awed of how they managed time, that seems to have brought them success more than any other factor.
It is easy to find out if we are being lazy, we don’t need to be an expert. If we are being lazy in the name of being ‘too busy’, how do we improve ourselves to do justice for life’s responsibilities ?
- Keep a watch on your routine, make a note of tasks that are least important, like playing video games, getting involved in not so important discussions.
- Make a schedule of everyday tasks, try to stick to it as much as possible.
- Prioritize the most important things to be handled early during the day. This would help us not to have stress.
- Find out smart ways of getting things done. For example, Groceries – order them online if required.
- Focus on one thing at a time and see it through completion.
- Keep your distractions to the lowest for increased productivity.
Life is too short to be busy. When we are not ‘busy’, we have more time to spend with family and friends, exchange ideas, time to play, take good care of us and others.
People who are good at managing time always have time, others are always busy !!