Why are we obsessed with being busy?

Ask anyone how they are and I guarantee the first answer will be ‘so busy’ or something to that effect. Same with the question ‘how was your weekend’ which is usually met with the answer ‘omg so busy, spent the whole time rushing around.’

Why are we so obsessed with being busy?

How do I know this? Well, I’m completely guilty of it. My current default answer to pretty much anything is ‘omg I’m just so busy’ or ‘there’s never enough hours in the day’ and quite frankly it’s annoying me, so I’m sure everyone else is thinking ‘what a twit’ (more likely replacing the I in twit for an a!).

When did being busy become a complete badge of honour? And does always being constantly busy equate to being successful?

Often my state of busyness is down to my own doing like procrastinating for too long over a work project that I haven’t left myself enough time to complete, or at the weekend trying to cram in so many plans and forgetting that teleportation hasn’t been invented, so I can’t be in two places at once. But, this still doesn’t stop me. Are we deemed uncommitted/unsuccessful if we don’t have a million and one projects on the go whilst maintaining an enviable Instagram grid and travelling the world at the drop of a hat?

I saw something on Twitter last week during the ‘Influencer outing scandal of 2019’ and it was a blogger confessing to using an Instagram growth tool to like, comment and follow other accounts in order to increase her own engagement and own account growth. When called out about using such a tool her answer was something of the effect ‘I’m just too busy to spend hours on Instagram engaging with other accounts and content’. So my question to this is, how can you expect other to engage with your content organically when you’re too busy to do it yourself?

Why are we obsessed with being busy?

I’m going to put part of the problem firmly at the door of smartphones. Pre-smartphone days you’d leave work and that would be that, you’d shut the door on the day, have time to wind down and recharge ready for the next. But now, we are never not available – email, WhatsApp, text, social media timelines, people sliding into the DM’s, we are always on and by responding at all times of the day or night we give the message that we are always available which adds to our perceived busyness. When Apple introduced the screen limit app I was absolutely horrified about the amount of time I was spending glued to my iPhone each day, so much so that I’ve added limits to social media and downtime in the evenings. I also taken to charging my phone on the landing so it’s not the first thing I reach for in the morning. I know this sounds utterly bonkers but I know I’m not the only one who would reach for their phone before turning the alarm off in the morning.

Being busy has become a badge of honour but I don’t think it’s a great one to be honest. So I’m making a conscious effort to stop responding to any question by mentioning how busy I am because I’m boring myself. Who’s with me?

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