Define busy…

Ever noticed how some people are always busy and some people are never busy, however how busy that person is actually doesn’t always amount to the actual work they have to do? Some people appear to make a whole career out of being busy and making everyone know just how busy they are, when proportionally they’re nowhere near as busy as the guy apparently taking it easy right next to them.

I used to be horrifically busy, but most of the busy was my own noise. What does busy really mean? Busy means I’ve got no time for you. Busy actually means you do not come high enough in my list of priorities to drop the other stuff. When this is your friends or your family being picked over some work task, that’s pretty sad.

Prior to being single my ex partner was always too busy actually sometimes we both were. To be fair he worked hard, but it meant the quality of our relationship actually disappeared. Why? Because in reality the goals of his career were more important to him. I’ve certainly done the same, it’s an easy trap to fall into. A lot of us struggle to let go of control over simple things and delegate. So here’s the learning path to me learning busy isn’t good.

It is so rare these days I’ll tell you I’m busy. I might say I can’t do that now but I can do that by such and such or whatever. But busy to me is unacceptable. I’m also now happy to say, I can’t do that right now but here’s a few people who could for whatever it is if it’s urgent. It’s a hell of a lot more helpful, and actually makes me more trustworthy. My other new favourite rather than “that’s not in my job description” is “I think this person may be able to do this better than me”, it’s a brave one but actually you are acknowledging what you’re not the best at and giving someone else a chance to shine, isn’t that better?

We are brought up wrongly to believe we have to be good at everything, we can’t have weaknesses and that’s simply not true. If we acknowledge someone is better than us at something we take the pressure off. Let’s face it, would you rather pay £60 to watch a one man band or the London Philharmonic? I know what I would rather do. Okay orchestral stuff many not be your thing and you’d rather go see Sea Sick Steve but you get my point, not even that guy does all his production, his bookings and his lighting… it’s a team thing.

There is no honour in working yourself to the point of a nervous breakdown because you simply cannot let go of the smaller things. Busy to me screams control freak, it screams I cannot let go, it’s like saying my work is so difficult and the key words… I’m so important that if I let someone-else do something in this task it wouldn’t be done properly.

There it is right there, we think busy means important and actually no, busy means idiot to me. Busy means, I am so much more important than you that I am busy and you are not. What a horrible attitude to have towards others. And actually it’s never true.

So I gave up the busy and got organised. If I know that I have to do something by this point I make sure it happens. I never turn down work that I’m capable of but if I need help with it, I always ask. If I can’t do it in the time frame, I work with the people who need it to prioritise it. If I’m working then should I not always be busy? Otherwise what are they paying me for? Yes, everyone is busy, that is the point.

When someone tells me they’re too busy to help me, I offer to lighten their load, it’s amazing the response you get. Normally it’s a “No, I don’t need any help” this for me speaks volumes, the person who can’t let go will normally waste time by complaining they’re overworked but then when offered help realises they will loose that “busy” badge of honour and so cannot accept help under any circumstances. If they fail… normally it’s not their fault either, they are always the first person to point the finger when actually, they wouldn’t share and so it’s all down to them.

Busy is bad for your reputation. Think about it, if you’re looking for a service provider and calling for quotes or looking on the internet, how long are you prepared to sit on hold or wait for a page to load before to give up and going elsewhere? I know that I don’t wait very long at all.

Here’s how I got my life back… I’m strict with my time, if I’m not being paid for this hour, I don’t do it. If it brings me no joy in doing it I delegate, that includes cleaning, I’d rather take the hit and delegate than get all het up doing something I hate.

It’s amazing how much more work you get done when you put down that tiny violin, stop making so much noise and get the hell on with it.

So today’s random thought/observation, busy = drama, calm = getting shit done. Everyone is busy, stop telling everyone and get it done so we can all get some peace and quiet!


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