I bet you say it. A LOT.
The connotation has evolved (devolved?) over the past few years. It used to reference good things like 1. actively and attentively engaged, or 2. not at leisure. But now, with our ridiculously full schedules, we drop the B word like f-bombs.
You may have already guessed that BUSY is the big bad word.
We used to go along, get along, do our stuff, get our stuff done.
Occasionally we’d be overwhelmed with things to do.
We had our daily duties–which didn’t count as “busy”, then we’d have those, oh, crap the deadline is tomorrow, oh, crap the tournament is tomorrow, oh, crap, Christmas is tomorrow! moments.
Now, every day seems to be an oh, crap day.
And oh, crap gets NO RESPECT.
Can’t make a meeting because you’re already booked?
This party overlaps with another obligation?
One commitment invites another, becoming the next…?
“My apologies, but I can’t come–”
“Oh, you’re busy,” they offer with a snort. “We’re ALL busy.”
Yes, we are.
Do you know how many people I know that PLAN down time?!
Who actually mark off days on their calendar to NOT BE BUSY?!
(I guarantee most of those days fill up anyway, *sigh*.)
I was discussing this very thing with an, ahem, very busy friend, and she said she’s tired of being busy. It’s exhausting. Instead, she’s opting to be PRODUCTIVE. As in, “I have a very productive week planned.” Or, “I have been very productive today.” The demands of her life are still exhausting, but deleting the B word from her vocabulary gives value to her obligations. People respect “productive”.
Phone calls, texts, emails, blog posting, social media, writing, designing, commuting, shopping, cooking, cleaning, kids, grandkids, partners, spouses, practice, games, doctor appointments, club meetings, day job, second job, pets, hobbies, binge-watching, etc.
No wonder we’re so…productive.