Why I Stopped Being Busy

being busy isn't productive

Do you know that feeling of being so busy that time flies with a blink of an eye? We’re so busy with all kinds of things—work, friends, going out, holidays, etc. But being busy is not a good thing at all.

Especially because we waste most of our time on nonsense. We say we’re busy but in reality, we just fill up our lives with crap.

We binge-watch tv shows for days, we go to networking events with weirdoes who try to sell you their services, we spend hours finding new clothes to buy so we can impress people we don’t even like.

We’re busy with bullshit. But until a few years ago, I never got it. When people asked me, “how are you,” my answer was, “busy.”

What’s wrong with us? Why are we so busy with things that don’t matter?

We even use our busyness as an excuse for important things. That’s sad. After I realized that I wasn’t in control of my life, I decided to stop being busy.

Being busy is an excuse that losers use. I say that because you can use “busy” as an excuse for everything.

  • You forgot your anniversary. “Yeah, but you know how busy I am, right? I’ll make it up to you.”
  • You haven’t called your mother in six months. “Mom, I’m sooo busy.”
  • You didn’t go to the gym. “I’m too busy to work out.”
  • And the WORST: “I’m too busy to work on the stuff that makes me happy.” That can be your music, business, model trains, or whatever.

I’ve used all those excuses. But at some point, I told myself this: How on earth can you be too busy to give someone that’s important to you a call? That’s nonsense.

Every time you say you’re busy, you’re actually saying that you can’t prioritize your life.

Most people identify being busy with being successful. But unlike 95% of the people I know, I don’t think to be busy means you’re successful.

When you meet people, they often want to show you that they have busy lives. “A full calendar must mean that I’m doing SOMETHING right, right?”

The truth is: If you’re busy, you don’t live at all. You just exist.

Derek Sivers, author of Anything You Want, and one of my favorite thinkers, says:

“To me, ‘busy’ implies that the person is out of control of their life.”

“But if I’m not busy, what the hell should I do?”

Slow down there. Take a step back. And think about which things in your life are just ‘busy work’ and not meaningful.

Seneca put it best:

“A good man will not waste himself upon mean and discreditable work or be busy merely for the sake of being busy.”

Here’s how I put that in practice.

It’s absolutely fine if you DON’T have plans for the weekend. People’s favorite question on Monday is: “What did you do over the weekend?”

You don’t have to do things so you can tell others about it. If people ask me, this is what I say: “NOTHING.”

Or, I say: “I wrote, went to the gym, and had dinner with family.”

And they look at me like: “That’s all?”

What? I’m not cool if I didn’t travel the world, had dinner with aboriginals, and jumped out of a jumbo jet on the way back?

Another thing: I say NO a lot.

Want to grab coffee all day? Want to write an article for money? Want to work for us? Want to do this or that?

No, not now—I don’t want to be busy.

When you’re busy, time moves fast. And I want time to move SLOW. That’s why I only say yes to things that matter to me.

Do you know that feeling? Some days seem like forever, and years later, you still remember how you felt that day. You should feel like that almost every day.

All you have to do is slow down, stop being busy, don’t forget about important things, and live a conscious life.

It’s not that difficult, right? You can start now.

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