mental health, mindset

Stop being busy all the time and start living your life


‘Stop being busy all the time’, well if I would have said this to my younger self, she would have totally freaked out. Being busy was the way of my life and if I wasn’t busy all the time, I wasn’t doing anything.

I have had a ‘busy mindset’ where my need to be busy all the time was so intense that I would not free even a single hour from my schedule. If this resonates with you, you are in the right place.

stop being busy

Are you being busy all the time and yet not getting your work done? Something like you’re putting hours in your work and doing everything you can do but your To-Do list never seems to end. As a result, you beat yourself up and work more to get those things done.

I can so feel you because I was someone who would be busy all the time and yet didn’t get any of her work done. This made me think if I was just masking my feelings under the tag of being busy or I was actually busy. The world we live in totally glorifies the ‘busy lifestyle’.

stop being busy

If you’re not busy, you’re not doing enough. The other day, when I called my friend to ask her whereabouts, she explained to me about her hectic life but also felt blessed of having a busy life. I was so confused!!

Is being busy a blessing? Having your dream job or working for your dream life is indeed nothing less than a blessing, but are we hustling and working day-in and day-out just to stay busy always? We have attached the idea of being busy with our worth and this is what invites stress and anxiety.

Related read – How to stop being always perfect and live fully.

Are you addicted to ‘ being busy’ all the time?

In the trend of doing more, hustling and grinding more, we have almost forgotten to live more. The joy of slowing down, the peace of being mindful at the moment seems like a monk-told-story.

Being busy has become the way of our life and we feel left out if we don’t follow this train. When I used to hear my friends complaining about not having enough time and being busy always, I used to feel low for not always being occupied with some work.

This tag of ‘busyness as success’ was so deeply ingrained in my mind that I forgot how intensely I craved for rest and slowing down. I had to realize that the true meaning of slowing down wasn’t being left out. And that having a busy life is not winning a lottery or some badge of honor to show off.

Are you also addicted to being busy always?

If you’re someone who fills up the calendar deliberately with all the kind of work to make yourself feel successful – you are addicted to being busy.

If you think of rest as something you don’t deserve or you’re not worth – you indeed are adopting a ‘ busy mindset’.

If you need to say ‘ I’M ALWAYS BUSY’ to everything that you couldn’t show up to – you indeed need to stop being busy now!

Being busy is a matter of choice

Most of the time, when we tag ourselves with being busy kind of attitude, we try avoiding the reality of life. It’s the easiest escape route to stop thinking and pondering over your feelings and what your heart wants. Maybe you’re not satisfied with your current work or you may not be feeling great about it but you always mask this under your busyness and feel that life’s good.

I know this because I had been there and I did this too. I used to keep my schedule always so tight that I had no time to actually ponder over my feelings or uncertainty of future life.

I was scared of knowing my feelings and I had to mask them with being busy kind of attitude. This was the high time when I had to pause, stop being busy, and start living intentionally.

In the book ‘ Daring greatly’, Brene Brown explains the connection between shame and busyness. She points out that we try numbing or feeling and ‘ being busy’ is the best way to escape from vulnerability. Being busy is always a choice and we need to be always mindful of what we choose.

Related read : How to overcome the fear of judgment.

Here are some ways to stop being busy always and get the work done!!

How to stop being busy always and get the work done

Here are some ways to condition your mind to take a break from ‘Being busy’ mindset and start live an intentional life.

1. Focus on what’s important/ crucial

Instead of filling up all the space in your calendar, point out what’s important and crucial that needs to be done anyhow. When you start doing less important things, you are actually giving up the little space to something that’s crucial.

Go through your To-Do list and mark everything that demands your attention. Be mindful of what matters and what doesn’t. This way, you can create a category of the things that you need to do because they are necessary and not because you want to be busy.

In the world where we are action-driven, it seems compulsory to do everything just because you can. Quit the need to be busy just because everyone out there is hustling and always grinding. You never know what their journey looks like or what they’re actually up to.

Try being mindful of your work and eliminate all the unnecessary task that fills up your list. The study shows that it’s more helpful to create ‘ An Urgent Task’ to-do list instead of trying to do it all. Accomplishing the top three important things is far more valuable than chasing 20 unnecessary tasks.

Related read – How to be your best self.

2. Being productive is not being busy

Get this thought out of your head that being busy is being productive. Productivity is never related to busyness in any way and it’s just a myth that we humans have hyped upon. Being productive is about getting organized and making time for even yourself. Hustle and grind aren’t always healthy.

Productivity is more about getting things done, the end result, and not all about staying up late and burning yourself out. I have had a hard time realizing this because for me, being productive was always working and hustling. Be it a job or business, you indeed need to stop being busy in order to be productive.

It’s always said that ‘ Busyness is the modern laziness’. When you don’t feel like accomplishing some highly challenging task, you will usually grab some other easy tasks and avoid the prior one saying, ‘I ‘M CRAZY BUSY’!!

Be mindful, if you’re busy or just lazy!!

3. Busyness doesn’t define your worth

Stop attaching your worth with your ‘ need to be busy’ attitude. You’re worthy even when you are not always busy. Sometimes, we feel shameful of not overworking or burning the midnight oil. We feel left out when everyone around us is working day in and out to make their ends meet and we clearly don’t feel enough of ourselves. You need to understand that being busy won’t determine your end result.

All of our lives we work hard to save for the future we don’t know. I’m not saying here to not save enough for an uncertain time but is it really wise to strive and beat ourselves to the extent that nothing of us is actually left in the end to enjoy what we worked for?

You are worthy of this life and success even when you don’t keep hustling always. Detach this idea and stop being busy just because you feel proud of being busy. This is only going to deteriorate your mental and physical health.

Related read – 9 self-help books that made me a better person.

4. Choose quality over quantity always

It’s always better to get the top three urgent work done with full attention than to accomplish a long list of unnecessary tasks. We are always in a hurry of getting things done and checking them off our list that we fail to check the quality of the work done. Instead of running behind everything, grab one thing, and pour your heart and soul into it. You will be amazed by the results.

As the old saying goes, “There’s no time to do things right, but there’s always time to do them twice.” Taking your time to accomplish each task will make sure that you don’t end up doing the same task again and again. We aren’t here to run a race of who gets more done. This will do nothing but add more stress and make you anxious about your never ‘relaxing’ life.

5. Emphasize on achieving, not doing

Getting something done is the sole aim of us staying busy all the time. Instead of having an addiction of doing things, try emphasizing on achieving them. When you connect your work more with the outcome, you will always be mindful of choosing your tasks. It’s important to create an impact with your work rather than keep doing it mindlessly.

Moreover, productivity is all about achieving instead of doing. Quit this idea of doing just because you have to and start really focusing on the outcome of your work, This will help you create a strategic plan and achieve your goal.

Related piece – The dark side of being always positive.

6. Leave some ‘fun time’ space on your calendar

Does your calendar look like stuffed with everything you want to do and it keeps on adding every time? I had this bad habit of filling up my calendar with all the tasks and never leaving some space to do some fun things just for myself.

I used to feel that if I have a free space, it will get wasted either by going to meet friends or shopping. Being an introvert, I really find it hard socializing so I would do everything to avoid that.

Hence, I used to fill my calendar with so many tasks that I would be always crazy busy when someone asked me to hang out. It was when I started learning more about journaling and rediscovering myself that I intentionally added ‘ free fun space’ on my calendar.

As a human, we all need some time for ourselves to rejuvenate and enjoy our life. In this free space, I normally try out some fun hobbies like calligraphy, practicing yoga, reading my favorite books. You need this time for yourself instead of being busy. This made me stop being busy all the time and actually accepting the peace of being in now.

7. Stop ‘glorifying’ being busy

We have this habit of boasting about our busy work schedule or showing off how busy we are. This trend needs to end now. If you’re on a call with your friend and she keeps on telling how busy she is, instead of bonding over and showing off your busy schedule, try being mindful.

stop being busy

Let her know how important it is to take rest for her health. Make her understand that busyness is not the status of life or something that you should be proud of.

Being busy isn’t rewarding because you’re masking your true self and numbing your feelings. Stop romanticizing the idea of always being busy and realize how harmful it can be to your mental health when you are not ready to face yourself.

Get more done by slowing down

People of Denmark have reported the highest happiness index because of the way of their living. They follow this beautiful way fo life called, ‘Hygge’ which means enjoying being mindful. They always prioritize slow life over the famous hustling, grinding life.

This has brought happiness and satisfaction to their lives. They believe in savoring the moment even if it’s just baking bread. Slowing down will make you realize the beauty of your life and teach you gratefulness.

Learn from the example of the fastest running animal in the world – Cheetah on how to slow down. When Cheetah is on his hunt. he will slow down and wait for the right moment to attack his prey.

In the end, busyness is an addiction just like being addicted to drugs or liquor but instead of banishing it, we are glorifying the being busy attitude.

Stop being busy for once and enjoy the beauty of life by savoring the moments. You will never know where your life passed and you failed to enjoy the beautiful moments of your life.

Are you being busy all the time? Do let me know in the comments if you’re someone who suffers from this addiction of being busy.

  1. Ishita

    August 29, 2020 at 10:01 pm

    Wow, what a perfect time to come across this blog! I totally agree that by being busy all the time, it doesnt mean we will get everything done. Also if we get too busy to love those around us and ourselves, what we are doing is not worth it. Thank you Sonia for this beautiful reminder. Hope you are feeling better!

  2. meghan

    September 2, 2020 at 7:23 pm

    What a great read! I bookmarked this so that I can read it over again after work. Iwill definitely give this a share when I am done.

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