Happy Monday! How is your week looking? Busy?
Because if that's the only word you're going to use to describe your week, I will be forced to believe that you're some sort of robot.
My good friend recently sent me this article (click for link) and it made me think. I'm not sure about other cities, but here in New York, being "busy" is a status. It's a rite of passage - it's almost something to brag about. If you're busy, you're important.
That is troublesome to me. Though, let me start by staying that I of course fall prey to this expression as well. I think, if we dig deep, we all do. But though my weeks are busy - they are also a lot of other things (moments, emotions, experiences, etc.), too. Last week I spent time with my best friend, Raven and I had an interesting discussion on a dinner date, I cried over frivolous and non-frivolous things alike, I texted with my sister in law...you get the picture.
So why do we feel the need to place so much importance on the word busy? Since when did it become a bad thing to have a clear schedule and free time?
I know all about free time in my line of of work. Building a business from the ground up is challenging and complicated and sometimes the phone just isn't ringing. I've had weeks where I barely put in 5 hours of work - and months where I wouldn't have a day off. It's part of the job, but I noticed something. When I was having a slow period, I was consumed with guilt (which, by the way, does absolutely nothing but ruin your mindset and set you up for failure). I felt like a LOSER. Even though I logically knew that this was all part of the growing pains of starting a new career.
In New York, it's an unspoken rule that work comes first, that we GO GO GO till we drop, answer every phone call and email immediately, and check our personal lives at the door. We're BUSY, so we don't have time to sit by the river and just think. We're BUSY, we can't chat on the phone for an hour with our best friend who lives in LA. We're BUSY, the fact that our cousin is getting married is just an inconvenience!
You know we're not that busy, right? Just like the Times article mentions, those who have to qualify their state of busy, usually have time to spare. I had a full day of work the other day, and when I got home I was tired. I sat down to write this post and a little thought popped into my head: "I don't have TIME to write this!"
But I do have time - we all have time. We just have to choose it.
Take the word busy out of your vocabulary. We all work, we all have to make that money! We all have 40-60 (or more!) hours of our lives taken up every week by our jobs. Most of my friends work full time AND audition all week, too! I don't know how they do it, and most of them still manage to make it out to social gatherings and answer texts and emails. Everyone is busy...start by saying how you really are...tired, sad, awesome, horny, pissed, you get the idea. What an interesting conversation you'll have!
Acknowledge that it's not a bad thing to have free time. Contrary to my comment above, we are not robots. We need to eat, sleep, sit, laugh, take a break and go on vacation. According to this article, all European countries have 4 paid weeks of vacation BY LAW! Can you imagine? I think of all the workaholics in this city and I see a lot of people letting their hair down (to put it lightly) if that were the law here! Nevertheless, even if you just have a weekend at home with nothing on the schedule - that's okay! A little "me" time is necessary. Can you say Girls marathon?
Perhaps, the less time we spend complaining about how little free time we have, the more time will open up for us to actually enjoy that phone call, bubble bath, baby shower, or guilt free night on the couch (which, by the way, is what I did basically all weekend).
Do you find yourself using the word busy as an excuse? How do you use your time off to recharge?