We live a time when being busy is seen as the validation of being important and valuable. The culture promotes this as being the norm for success. Manage your time better and structure your daily/monthly schedule thoroughly, they say. All are action verbs. You need TO DO something to improve, to achieve, to reach goals, to be more efficient and productive.
I was busy all my life. Busy learning everything I considered important for my future, busy having a social life, busy planning the future, busy doing everything that was required at work and even more, if possible. I stretched my limits to perform at the highest degree in all aspects I considered important. I guess I was taking myself too seriously. Obviously, that came at a price that I unwillingly had to pay: my overall health.
When you always focus on doing something you have no time for creativity, for mind wandering, for contemplation, for regeneration. You have no time for just BEING.
Once you grow older (and wiser?) you realise TIME is the most valuable resource you have especially because it’s limited and cannot be extended or bought. Sounds trivial, but it actually makes sense.
F. Nietzsche may have been harsh when he said: “Today as always, men fall into two groups: slaves and free men. Whoever does not have two-thirds of his day for himself, is a slave, whatever he may be: a statesman, a businessman, an official, or a scholar.”
But he was not far from the truth; French corporate people invented a new type of meeting which they use: RAM (Rendez-Vous avec Moi-même – trad. Meeting with myself) to get some time for themselves in the never-ending series of sessions and tasks on the To do list that never seems to reduce which we call ‘daily work schedule’.
So, considering all this, what if, instead of doing more, we do less? What if instead of what I have to do, we switch to what I want to do? And put some time aside for enjoying and savouring the things we do care about?
I heard about this revolutionary idea (for me, at least!) of “time affluence” in an online seminar. This translates into having enough time to do what you want to do without being pressured by time or the urge to be productive. Imagine that! Basically, even having time to do nothing if that’s what you feel like and if it brings you good vibes! The effect is therapeutic!
Now, every time I realise I’m too busy for my own benefit, I take a step back and readjust. I’ve became better at planning, but not in the old fashion way by adding or rearranging activities; nowadays when I plan, I remove things to make space for the activities I enjoy or the lack of activities which I enjoy even more! To have me-time. You may say I became selfish. I’d say I am more self-aware and value the time I still have.
Think about this idea: not doing anything at times or doing less could actually improve your overall wellbeing and performance. How sometimes not being productive and taking time for yourself could actually make you happier and even more productive and efficient if that’s what you’re looking for. Crazy, I know!
Whatever you decide to do with your time, remember to
Take care of yourself!