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The glorification of being busy - The Stanford Daily

https://www.stanforddaily.com/2017/02/24/the-glorification-of-being-busy/

stanforddaily.com

The glorification of being busy - The Stanford Daily
How many times a day do you ask someone how they are, and they respond with "good, but stressed," "I'm so tired" or "I'm fine, but I've just been so busy"? A bit too often, I'm guessing. "Busy-ness" is glorified in our society, especially at Stanford, which is a microcosm of exceedingly high achievers.

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Busy-ness is glorified

Busy-ness is glorified

“Busy-ness” is glorified in our society. We wear our stress like a badge of honor, as if the busier we are, the more impressive we must be, and the more accomplished we must seem.

When we glorify stress and being busy, we normalize a culture where running ourselves ragged is not just celebrated but the norm. To not be busy makes you an outlier — someone that is not measuring up to the "standards.”

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Busy-ness is selfish

Being so hyper-fixed on our own stress and schedule is, in a way, selfish. It’s a way to be caught up in our own little world.

Instead, we should be encouraging ourselves and others to find a better balance in our lives and in our experiences. 

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Analyze

We convince ourselves that everything we do now, will pay off when we are successful and achieve that next milestone. But, as soon as we reach that goal, we rarely bask in that success because we must be in pursuit of the next one.

Analyze the reasons as to why you are doing the things you do, and why you are reaching for the goals you are trying to achieve.

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Busyness is a myth

Although people feel much busier with work these days, the total time people are working – whether paid or otherwise – has not increased in Europe or North America in recent decades.

The illusion of busyness is caused by:

  • Economies grow and time is more valuable: Any given hour is worth more, so we experience more pressure to squeeze in more work.
  • The type of work we do has changed: We live in an “infinite world" - more incoming emails, meetings, things to read, more ideas to follow up – and digital technology means you can easily crank through them. The result, inevitably, is feeling overwhelmed.

Busyness has become the indicator of status

Though historically, the ultimate symbol of wealth, achievement and social superiority was the freedom not to work. Now we measure our worth not by the results we achieve, but by how much of our time we spend doing things. 

The costs of indecisiveness

  • Not taking action can cost you an opportunity, or cost money and time as you delay.
  • People waiting for you to make a decision can get frustrated.
  • You can feel stress about your...

How we deal with uncertainty

These are some of the common ways we habitually deal with the uncertainty of a decision. But none of them solve the problem for us:

  • Doing some research. 
  • Writing out a pros and cons list.
  • Asking a bunch of people about their opinion.
  • Putting off the decision.

We are uncertain about

  • What the best choice might be.
  • Whether there will be negative consequences of the choice.
  • Whether we’ll look dumb to others if we make the wrong choice.
  • Whether we’ll feel dumb, or ripped off, and regret it for years to come.
  • Whether we’ll be OK if we make the wrong choice.