(You can listen to this blog post by clicking the “play” button above if you prefer the podcast-style.)
It seems to be that for some reason people think I’m extremely busy and can’t imagine how I “do it all.” I hear this often. What’s funny is I intentionally don’t talk about how “busy” I am because I think busyness is a disease that is pervading our culture. We make it seem like if we’re “busy” then we’re somehow more important and people should be proud of us. But busy doesn’t always equate to better. Oh, we say we know that but do we really? It feels so good to say we do a bazillion different things . . . that we manage to juggle it all and keep it all in balance. Really, though, are we? Are we truly capable of “doing it all?” I argue no. Seemingly, we’re superheros. But in reality? Something has got to give. Sacrifices are being made. Any time we commit to something, something else is sacrificed. That doesn’t always mean it’s wrong; it just means that when we place priority on something, other things aren’t priority. That doesn’t mean they’re totally ignored; we just aren’t as focused on what isn’t priority. If we’re multitasking, something is being sacrificed–we aren’t capable of devoting our entire attention to more than one thing at any minute in our day. Just reality.
So when people ask me how I do it all, I simply say that I don’t. I’m not actually that busy. I was for many years, yes. I said yes to everything and tried to fill my plate with as much as possible because it made me feel accomplished, important, and as if I were contributing to the world in a greater way. But what ended up happening was I neglected other areas of my life, like my own emotional health. If we’re so busy that we don’t choose to have time to relax and reflect on our lives, for example, then our emotional health just gets pushed deeper and deeper. It doesn’t disappear but just remains untouched. Eventually it can’t get pushed down any further and it explodes and needs addressed. For some this is a complete rock bottom breakdown. For others, it’s a slow process of muck coming to the surface. [Read more…]