Friday, November 1, 2013

Glorifying Busyness

Let's be honest about a few things this morning. Our culture glorifies busyness. We LOVE to brag about how busy we are to others and sadly, we miss a lot of conversations and relational growth because we are too dang busy. The older I've gotten, the more prevalent it has become and the more I hate it.

At UNC, you've got all the over-achieving, over-committed, president- of- seven- clubs people all in ONE place. It was there where it became clear to me. Our culture loves to be busy and even when we're not busy we find a way to PRETEND that we are busy. How ridiculous! I can remember on many occasions fellow students discussing and practically arguing over who was busier. Really? I'm not judging though because I took part in these discussions... and lets be honest Spanish majors really didn't have as much work as say Nursing majors. Yet, I still felt the need to exaggerate alll of my homework, projects and FIVE page papers in another language!!! Again, how ridiculous! 

Have you ever noticed that most other cultures don't do this? In fact, most cultures encourage rest times and vacations. In Spain and some South American countries, everyone takes a siesta in the middle of the day. Shops close and people go home, nap, then go back to work. This does not mean they're lazy though, in fact, Hispanics are some of the hardest working people I know. Also, lets look at Europe. Europeans take month long vacations in the summer. They leave work and spend a MONTH just relaxing with their family. I'm really not sure why Americans glorify busyness or when it began, but I think we seriously need to take a look at our culture. The stress levels, mental health problems, obesity and so forth could be reduced if we learned to cut things out of our schedules and rest. 

I am just now learning in this stage of life that this glorifying busyness needs to stop. I will no longer take part in this. I refuse to cram my schedule full of activities, over-committing and draining myself until I have a breakdown (this happens, I know from experience). I'm learning to say no and not because I have so many other activities but because its important to set aside time to be still, to read, to grow and to rest. I am learning to be confident in this decision and be honest that yes, I did just spend two hours relaxing and reading. Taking time for yourself to rest and rejuvenate is not being lazy and sadly, so many of us think that way. Even as I have begun to realize the importance of rest, I am still struggling with appearing lazy to others. We have all had it pounded into us that we must be the busiest, the most involved and that it's completely normal to rush from one thing to the next. Let's stop glorifying busyness; we were never meant to live this way.

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