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Friday , May 25, 2018

Too busy is a myth

WE ARE midway through March and a quarter of year 2018 is almost gone. It zoomed by! Where did all that time go? More importantly, the question to ponder on is: were we able to make time for loved ones and enriching experiences? People often get caught up with their hectic lives, juggling multiple roles.

Funny how I used to beg others for time. When asked for coffee dates, some people would just reply, “I am too busy!” Maybe, I have even been guilty of this before, too. The defeaning cries of the perpetually busy peeps are—“I’m really so busy, I’m stressed, my sched’s packed. I have no time. There’s work, family, activities...” Yada, yada, yada. The list of excuses just goes on and on...

But thankfully, I learned through my mother’s sudden death due to a treacherous brain aneurysm that this “I’m too busy” concept is a curse. Attending to responsibilities/tasks are crucial but letting them rule over your life to the point of being stressed and neglecting people, including yourself, is detrimental. In today’s fast-paced world, too busy is bullshit. There, I said it.

People throw the word too busy around like’s it’s a damn badge of honor. But, really, it is nothing but a meaningless cover-up that perversely defines worth. There is no shame in slowing down. No one is so extremely busy in this world for anything: “kung gusto, may paraan. If ayaw may dahilan!” Even the Greek philosopher Socrates warned—“Beware the barrenness of a busy life!”

So, no. I personally refuse to be too busy for people or for the pursuits that bring me joy. I MAKE the time. Simple!

Right now, it’s 2 a.m. and I have to get up early for our flight. I’ve had a wonderful day—last day of class, submitting grades, lunch bday party, and dinner with out-of-town guests. Here I am in bed writing this article on my iphone. I was all set to just let this day pass without writing, but in the end, I couldn’t.

Not because I have something to prove...but because I really, really want to put thoughts to words. Writing is cheaper than therapy, so I allot effort and time because it makes me happy. In the same token, I make time for people because they are important to me, and they make me the happiest.

In a world full of smartphones packed with our social media tools and other apps, there are undoubtedly tons of distractions. Noticably, the correlation between busy and disconnection seem to be directly proportional. The more busy we are, the more absent we are. We end up relying on “insta” food, insant messaging, and other quick fixes. Ironically, more apps to help us “connect” and manage our busy lives/scheds keep us glued to our phones and distract us even more.

One of the humbling playing fields we all share is the finite number of 24 hours in each day. Rich, poor, fat, skinny, etc, we all have the same amount of time. It is one of the greatest equalizers (along with death, illness, and taxes which we all can’t escape).

We are also all blessed to have this choice on what to fill our days with—will we just mindlessly waste time waiting for the day to end, will we go about our day rushed/stressed, or will we mindfully engage the world with passion and purpose? I don’t know about you, but for me, the last is clearly the best option.

Sadly, most people never realize the myth of busy until it’s too late. It only hits us when we are incapacitated by illness, and thereby, forced to face our own mortality; or we realize busy-ness is a sham when loved ones become sick or we are by their deathbed. These are the moments when the significance of “too busy” dissolves and we learn that busy is in fact a disservice to our souls because we didn’t get to spend enough time with loved ones.

Words are extremely powerful. When we repetitively say the words: “I’m too busy”; we actually make it happen. These words become our reality keeping us away from our hobbies, family, and friends. Do we really have no time and energy to nurture relationships and ourselves? Our busy-ness prevent us from sharing our time, giving our presence, and pursing our passions.

Life is extremely short. Before we know it, our last breath will be upon us. When death comes knocking on the door, will we have lived, laughed, and loved enough?

Wouldn’t it be nice to leave this earth a tad better knowing we gave it our best shot and realizing that our presence has left an indelible mark on others no matter how small? That can only happen without distractions; when we actually give time to connect with real life people and nurture relationships with them. Never be too busy in making the people we love a priority because time will eventually run out.

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