Aren’t you tired? That’s what I want to ask people I meet who are so busy, the people who are doing it all. Don’t you want to slow down? I know the answer because I was the crazy-busy, do it all, run yourself into the ground girl.
I was tired.
I wanted to slow down.
Once I did stop trying to do it all, and began my busy boycott, I realized while I was chasing it all, making sure I didn’t miss a thing, I was missing the most important things.
10 Things You Miss When You are Busy Doing it All
1. Heart callings
I remember feeling really burnt out at work and thinking there must be something better out there, but I didn’t know what I wanted to do instead, or how I wanted to spend my time because I was too busy to think straight. My heart was calling for something different, but I didn’t have any attention left to listen.
When was the last time you just sat still and thought, “Ok heart, what do you want?” Maybe now is a good time.
I’m talking naps and seven or eight hours of actual night-time snoozing. If you think, I’ll sleep when I die, why wait? Sleep feels magnificent. Not only does it feel really good, but sleep has great health benefits too. Getting enough sleep provides more energy, less pain (especially if you suffer from chronic pain) and better moods. Read more here about why we sleep.
3. Signs of distress
If you are moving at an unsustainable pace, your body is telling you. Your heart is telling you. Your family is telling you. They may only be whispering at first, but if you miss those early signs of distress, the whispers get louder. Pay attention to the quiet words and signals to avoid breakups and breakdowns.
4. Beautiful views
The world is a stunning place, but when you are rushing through the day, you overlook the beauty all around you. Start noticing beauty. Maybe it’s a mountain sunset, ocean waves rolling in, someone’s smile, moving art or a stunning idea that crosses your mind.
Are you missing opportunities for connection with the people you love most? When you catch yourself saying, “just a sec” or “I’ll be done in a minute” while checking email or burying your head in work knowing it will take much longer … stop. Make eye contact and say, “I’m here.”
There is something more satisfying than checking items off your to do list. It’s knowing you’ve done enough, and that you are enough even if nothing else gets done. When you stop measuring by what’s on your heart instead of what’s on your list, you can stop equating your worth by your work. You are not what you do. As Toni Morrison said, “You are not the work you do; you are the person you are.”
When you are running crazy, doing all the things, you don’t get to be alone, be quiet, or thoughtful. Solitude can calm you down and energize you. Being alone with nothing to do is something you don’t want to miss out on.
8. Free time
Remember recess? We need unscheduled blocks of time to be free. I don’t say no because I’m so busy, I say no because I don’t want to be so busy. I want free time. We all deserve time to be curious, bored and idle. We deserve time to putter or to do nothing at all.
What’s more glorious than the first bite of your favorite meal? Do you savor those first bites, or are you eating at your desk, in your car, or on the way out the door? Savoring is a gift you can give yourself anytime.
You may be the most thoughtful, caring, loving person, but if you are always so busy, you are missing out on tiny moments of love all day long. Make time and space to notice love, give love, accept love and to be love.
Doing it all or even trying to do it all is overrated. If you can slow down and reclaim even a few of the things on this list, you’ll feel more confident saying no to make more time and space for what matters to you and start enjoying a full life instead of a busy day.