…and Tuesday and Wednesday and Thursday and Friday and…you get the point.
So, ‘how are you anyway?!’
You *I bet* ‘Fine thanks, just super busy!’
Just super busy…Sound familiar? In fact, I struggle to think of a time recently where this hasn’t been the response I’ve received (or given for that matter).
And for the most part, I think that it is true for most people. But why? Well here’s my thoughts. It’s pretty hard these days not to be busy isn’t it? I mean, I hear the phrase ‘I’m bored,’ or ‘it was boring,’ several times a week (never in my lessons of course) but always from children. To which I reply, and this makes me feel SO much like my Mum, ‘Only boring people get bored.’
Really though, I feel as though I would LOVE to be bored. Think about it, when was the last time you felt bored? Or, to re-phrase that, when was the last time that you felt so bored that you felt the need to declare it?
And that brings me on to my second point: if I did feel bored, I certainly wouldn’t be telling anybody about it. It would be because I was in a situation in which I wasn’t able to keep myself busy. *imagine being stuck on a aeroplane with no technology/books/people* In reality, we all have a million things to keep us busy.
How many ways can you stay in touch with people without even leaving your house, or your bed for that matter? Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat, WhatsApp – dare I say email? And those 6 don’t even require you to speak, let alone SEE anybody. I can count at least 10 off the top of my head, and that’s not counting in person. And if we are honest with ourselves, really honest with ourselves, then the need to respond to comments, obtain likes, make ‘friends’ online and stay in constant contact with the rest of the world is at best a compulsion. I don’t feel it would be an exaggeration to say it is an addiction.
Even if we aren’t actively engaging then we are passively doing so, listening to a podcast on the way to work, listening to music whilst working out, singing along to the radio in the shower (come on people, we all do it), watching a YouTube video on ‘how to…’ whilst getting ready for a night out. Don’t even get me started on having a TV in your bedroom. EVERY moment that previously provided us with the opportunity to be bored, is now filled.
Say no and close doors
If you instinctively think about saying ‘no’ to something then stop and actually think about it some more. Our natural desire to please others and push ourselves to achieve can often mean that we get caught up doing things we don’t want to do or things that don’t have a positive impact on our lives. Now, I’m not saying you should stop helping people unless it directly benefits you – I’m not a horrible person – but you should value yourself and your time and carefully consider that before saying yes. Saying no does not make you horrible. If people think it does, chances are, they might be the horrible ones. The same thing goes for social media too! Don’t actually like what you are seeing? Then say no and don’t follow that person.
Or maybe it just shows that you are in control and care about the people that take up your time and your feed?!
Let your work do the talking
“A writer is a producer of words. Produce words: you are a writer. Don’t produce words: you are not a writer” – Stephen King.
If you are a writer, but you are constantly talking about the next thing you are going to write, then you aren’t really writing are you? I think society exacerbates this problem too. We are so concerned with what people are doing next that we forget to take note of what they have actually done or are actually doing.
I’ve stopped writing this blog post to reply to DMs, check my email inbox, book a restaurant for our stay in York over the half term break and sleep (I started it yesterday). Now, I don’t mean to blow my own trumpet but I know that once I have an idea for a blog post in mind, I can produce something I am proud of in the space of an hour. Then, if I am doing it properly, I need time to go completely away and refresh my mind before revisiting it to correct all of my spelling and grammar mistakes – dyslexia at it’s finest!
But, today I didn’t do that, today I checked my inboxes.
The reality of multi-tasking is that you actually just don’t give any one task your full attention. No single task gets you at your best anymore.
Also, as a final thought to leave you on, nothing turns people off quite like fiddling with your phone at the dinner table. It stops you being present and it makes you look like a bit of an idiot.