Wednesday, May 28, 2014

The "B" Word...

I know that when you think of the "B" Word, your first thought is to that oft-quoted classic: B*tch, or Beotch, or whatever. That's not the one I am referring to here. I am talking about that new 4-letter word that should be quickly banned from our vocabulary:

How many times have you heard this, or even said it yourself, in recent history? My bet would be more than you think. I believe that it has become so ingrained in today's society that we barely even notice it anymore. A typical exchange goes something like this:

P1: Hey how are you doing, I haven't seen you in forever!
P2: Oh yeah...I've been so busy. I'm just buried with work; and then I get home and I don't have any time because I'm busy doing all the family stuff. I'm just busy, busy, busy.
P1: Oh I know it...I've been busy running around too. And next week doesn't look any better...just more of the same.
P2: Well, I'll "see" you around Facebook! Talk to you later...gotta run to my next meeting.

Another exchange might go like this:

P1: How's your exercise plan coming along?
P2: Oh man...I just got too busy to do anything.
P1: Yeah, life can get like that sometimes. How about going for a run tonight after work?
P2: I would love to, but I can't. I'm super busy in the evenings once I get home.
P1: Well, alright...maybe next week?
P2: Yeah, sure...we'll see what we can do. I'll hit you up on Facebook or Instagram later!

Now, don't get me wrong, I do know that we all have a lot of responsibilities in today's day and age. I know that I could easily fill every minute of every day with something. But how often are we filling the time with just that...something. As in nothing all that important, but something to fill the time, or kill the time?

We live in a world where we are more connected than ever through social media and instant news on a global scale. But are we really connected. Or are we actually more disconnected than ever? I tend to go with the latter. We don't have conversations anymore, we have status updates. We don't do coffee breaks, we do Tweets. We don't peruse our friend's photo albums while reminiscing about memories, we Instagram our lives away rarely looking back.

We are missing the point and are getting lost in being busy for the sake of being busy.

I'm guilty of this to a fairly large degree myself. I have gotten to the point where saying I'm busy, thinking I'm busy, hearing other people talk about busy is so cliche I want to scream the next time I hear it!!! Because it's a load of crap on so many levels.

I'm "busy", but I'm also choosing to fill spare moments with Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Bloglovin, blah, blah, blah the list goes on. I could call it "downtime" or "recharging" or whatever else I want to, but at the same time I can't then turn around and respond to someone "oh, I've been SOOOOO BUSY". Busy is a manufactured state of being a majority of the time.

And I think it is time for us to stop the crazy BUSY train. Let's get off at the next stop and I think we can take the first step by banning the word "busy" from our vocabulary.

What might happen if the next time you see a friend and they ask how you've been that you actually tell them something positive about what you've been up to instead of talking about how busy you are?

What might happen if the next time a child asks you to read a book with them that you just sit down and read it instead of responding "later, I can't right now, I'm busy making dinner, or folding clothes, or fill in the blank with whatever you want"?

What might happen if you actually stop feeling like you're busy or overwhelmed all the time (even if you are!) and you just started prioritizing and getting one thing at a time done? Sometimes just the act of saying "I'm busy" makes us feel, well...busy!

What might happen if next time you have a break in a meeting you don't grab your phone to check Facetwitgram or emails? You might actually get to know your coworkers might actually find some connections with people in REAL LIFE.

I could go on and on and I'm not here to lecture anyone. As I've said already - I am totally guilty of all of these things!!!!! I'm saying this as much to myself as I am to anyone that might read this. I am not without reproach and I'm not throwing rocks at glass houses.

In an article about the top reasons people don't exercise, can you guess what the number one reason was? If you said "don't have time" or some variation of that then winner, winner, chicken dinner! You are absolutely right. I could probably find a dozen surveys and they would all come back with the same - no time. People often ask me how I fit in running with everything else and they are always shocked when I say that I make time for it one way or another and how I usually do that is by getting up while the rest of the world sleeps. I'm not saying that because I want kudos or to brag like I'm some superhero, it's just the reality of it. I make the time because I need to.

You find a way to make time for the things that matter. And what matters should NOT be Facetwitgram, emails, busy-body tasks, etc. What matters should be connecting with others, finding beauty around us, reading a book, writing a letter, crunching fall leaves, riding a bike...this list is ever-changing and depends on each individual person, season, time of life, etc.

What I think we should all take away from this is that we should NEVER EVER EVER be "too busy" to live life. Let's stop saying that we are "busy". Let's start connecting with the people that are in front of us. Let's remove that one simple word and see what happens! You never know...

So will you pledge with me to remove the word BUSY from your vocabulary?


  1. I am so guilty of this and I do fill my time with things so like the past 5 days have been nothing but busy work but it was to make it so we would have a space to relax. I have projects coming up that will make me busy but I have a schedule I can rearrange at times to make time to truly connect with others. I wish some of the people I'd love to hang out with lived closer to me (ahem!) but I need to contact people for commitment dates to get together now that the house is presentable. I'm tired of saying "we should get together soon" and they're like "yeah, let's schedule it soon" then a year passes and the cycle continues. I have several people I just need to nail down and say "okay, I want to get together, what's your schedule like?" I will gladly do a morning-ish workout if a weeknight is all they have to meet and I love cooking dinner for others and can make it healthy.

    So thank you for giving me a kick in the butt to get something in the books with people!

    1. AWESOME!!! And yes, sometimes we have to button down so we can then turn around and open it all up...I can only imagine how much catch up you have to do after that glorious vacation of living the dream in Cali! :-)