Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Busy Badge of Honor

So I was in a meeting yesterday and we were discussing busyness.

Have you ever noticed people wear their busyness like a badge of honor?

It has become a competition.

Who does the most? Who has the least amount of time in the day to relax? And if you actually do relax, holy crapballs, you would never ever fess up to it.......

Want to see a woman go from loving to murderous in 0.03 seconds?
 Ask a stay-at-home-mom what she does all day?
Do it. I dare you.


You see, we constantly see all sorts of facebook posts that say "I was up at 4:30am, worked out, came home, fed my kids cage-free organic eggs and turkey bacon, folded 16 loads of laundry, mowed the neighbors yard, and took homemade muffins to the kids teachers and it's not even 9:00am yet." (Of course now they're on facebook which kind of proves that they are not always super busy.....but I digress.....)

Rarely do you see the post that said "I laid around all afternoon watching Breaking Bad while my kid was at pre-school."

 (That's exactly what I did yesterday) but of course I didn't post it because I fall prey to the Busy Contest as well.

I see your homemade teacher gifts and sixteen soccer tournaments in one weekend and I will raise you those things as well as church obligations, working, school, exercise, cooking, pretend playing with my kid while I'm on facebook, cleaning, shopping, and buying a partridge in a pear tree.

This is what we do.

We do Busy. And we do Busy well.

But somewhere along the way, I think we've confused Busy with Better.

In fact, to be honest, while I was not excited about having ear surgery, a part of me was straight up jacked when the doctor said, "you have to take it easy for several weeks."

Several weeks?

Of taking it easy?


An excuse to not be busy or at least pretend I'm busy at all times? 

Now don't get me wrong, there is value in activities. There are lessons to be learned on the soccer field. But there are also lessons to be learned at home, relaxing in your pj's on a Saturday morning, drinking coffee while the kids argue over the guinea pig maze they're creating upstairs.

Life is full of seasons and some of those seasons are just plain gonna be busy. No way around it. But some of those seasons could be better than busy. They could be full of intentional moments of rest. We could be busy just being. To be honest, I've quite enjoyed my doctor ordered rest which has brought me to the conclusion that I need to change some things. So I'm going to challenge myself this month and ask myself this question:

Is this activity going to busy us or better us?

And if the answer is just busy, I'm going to practice saying no.

And if you're not too busy, feel free to join me in this challenge. :)

PS - Owen just left for school. I better get back to Breaking Bad. That show is not going to watch itself!

PPS - I realize that some of you may think watching Breaking Bad is not actually bettering myself. But it is.....really.....I now know the ingredients that go into crystal meth so I can be on the lookout should anyone of my family or friends all of a sudden start asking me to stock up on sudafed....... I'm prepared and I'll know they need help.


  1. I've never bought into the busy myth. My natural state is at rest. And I love that. In fact, I'm trying to contrive plans right now to leave work early and go do me some nothing. It's all going to hinge on getting the two littlest kids to take naps, though...

    1. Hope the nap thing worked out. I remember those days. I would have traded my soul to get the kids to take a nap at the same time. ;)

  2. Um that quote at the top that says its by Jon Lennon (whoever that is)- I'm pretty sure he stole that from mom. Because I tell that to lots of people and always say our mom said it. So you better call Jon and let him know....Panze Roberts is actually the name that should be under that quote. But yes I agree with the Busyness. It's all rather exhausting and annoying. And now I'm off to bake homemade pies and sew my clothes :)

    1. Please oh please tell me you know who Jon Lennon is?!! But that does sound like a Panze quote too. Maybe he stole it from her? ;) Can't wait to see your hand-sewn clothes........

  3. I know when I look up busyness in the dictionary some pics of some of my fav people appear. I have one friend who thinks my joy of reading a book is "lazy" and her pic is front and center for on-the-go-nonstop-gotta-keep-moving-and-doing-busy! Refreshing, rejuvenating, strengthening of spirit.....all very worthwhile so you have the stamina to be selective with what keeps us busy. I wish you could have avoided the surgery, but so glad you are embracing and reflecting on the "take it easy" aspect of recovery! Enjoy that part!