You don’t often come across people who don’t tell you how busy they are these days.
The kid at the grocery store checkout is busy.
The student in year ten is busy.
The mum with a kid at home is busy.
The grandmother with no kids at home is busy.
The guy on the phone in the next car is obviously busy.. and dumb.
The single girl living with friends is busy.
I’m busy too, but I am trying so hard not to say those words out loud as I feel they only become self fulfilling prophecies and are just a bunch of blergh words!
You need to ask..
1. What am I busy with?
Write a list of all the things that you have done this week, and then write a list of all the things that you need to complete.
Prioritise these things with 1 being the most important to get done, 2 the next and so on. Don’t forget, unless you are Chuck living on an island, you are not the only person in your life. Consider the other people in your life as well and those priorities may include doing things your husband, your children, your co-workers, your friends, your grandchildren. The things that matter to you might actually need to take a back seat as you do the things that really matter in the long run!
Is there anything on the list that you can give to someone else to do? Write their names next to the job. It could be a big chore that you could pay one of your kids to do. It could be some telephone calls that another member on your committee could make. Don’t be hesitant to ask just because another person may not do the job to your exacting standards, at least it will get done!
4. Be ok with saying no.
It’s ok to admit defeat. It’s ok to tone down expectations and it’s totally ok with ringing that person and saying ‘I’m sorry, I know I committed to doing this, but I just can’t’.
5. Ask yourself why are you doing it?
I have a motto that if I get a whole heap of pleasure out of saying what I am busy with, I am probably putting way to much emphasis on that task. If you need to rattle off everything that you have done and achieved in a day you got to take a good hard look at yourself; Especially if it’s things that you SHOULD be doing anyway. Volunteering on committees and community programs is great, it comes from your heart, so keep it there. People will only question your motives if you need to relay all the wonderful things you do in your life.
6. Take time out for yourself
Make it possible to have some down time. My time is usually after lunch for an hour before the kids are picked up from school. Just me, my book and my pillow. For an hour a day. Bliss. You may say- ‘it’s alright for her, her baby is probably sleeping’, but I have always done this. My toddlers had quiet time in their cots. My preschoolers sat on their beds with a few books and stayed there, because I told them to. Even during the school holidays, if we are home, we have ‘quiet time’. It’s up to you to make it work. It’s up to you to make those routines.
Go over the lists of all the things you need to get done once in a while. Reprioritise. Make decisions based on what is important to you and what is best for the long term.
8. Change your thinking
Try no to say ‘Oh, I’m so busy’ as the only person you need to thank for that feeling is yourself, no one else. Get your priorities straight.
For me, it’s about my family right now and good sleep routines for my growing little man. There are so many things I’d like to do, but right now, in this season of my life, I have to be content with these priorities.
Are you a super busy person? What are you busy with? What hints can you share to cut down on the busyness of life?