Busy-ness and the Death of Dreams
The last couple posts have been focusing on the lost art of Big Dreams and all the excuses we put between ourselves and our goals. Busy-ness is the big lie that kills Big Dreams.
I posted a year and a half ago about this very phenomenon. In that post, titled “The Oldest Excuse in the Book”, I quoted Heather Sellers from one of my favorite motivational writing books, Page After Page.
From my post:
In her book Page After Page, Heather Sellers writes that if we want to be writers (or chefs, or parents, or whatever), we have to stop “qualifying ourselves for every other job.” We have to stop being so busy. Don’t volunteer for everything; don’t micromanage your life and the lives of everyone around you; don’t say yes to invitation. Decide what is really important to you and make time for that.
She writes that every time you say you are too busy:
“You are saying: I am unhappy; I am afraid of my power. You are saying to us, to yourself: I am important and in a hurry and people just don’t understand how good I am, especially me.
You, angel baby, are grooving on the busy drug. You are addicted to distraction. Like heroin, it feels so good the first time. The first time you had that busy day, you rushed and fled from task to person to event – you flew, you were so much like a fairy tale person, and look what got done.
Many of us spend the rest of our lives trying to re-create that busy buzz.”
Now, busy is not a terrible thing, unless it is keeping you from your dreams. You have to choose. Do you want to be busy all the time or do you want to carve out time and space in your life for your writing or whatever makes you feel alive? It really is your choice.
I still find after eighteen months that I use that excuse too often. I am “too busy” to work on my book, “too busy” to work on my blog, “too busy” to even sit down for a minute! And really who isn’t? Our lives are overflowing with responsibilities – things we have to do, people we have to see, items we have to check off our never-ending to-do list.
We have to decide what takes priority. Will we watch an hour of TV or spend an hour writing the next scene? Will we spend 30 minutes scrolling Facebook or Twitter, or will we spend it reaching out to folks in our chosen area to network and see if we can’t make a connection that will move our dream forward?
I firmly believe that merely banishing the phrase “I’m so busy” from our speech will go a long way toward helping us realize that we are really NOT too busy. If something is important, we make time for it. Period. And if we stop telling the universe that we are too busy for our dreams, the universe will help us find time to make them happen.
I realize that there will always be responsibilities. I can’t let the house fall apart around me or let the laundry pile up. I have to be sure to eat and sleep on occasion. For those dreamers with kids both human and furbabies, the to-do list grows exponentially – more errands, more appointments, more clean up. But somewhere in all the daily living, we all have some down time. It may only be 15 minutes one day or a half hour the next, but it is there.
The trick is to suss it out and make the very most of it.
We have to be vigilant and guard our down time with the same fierce determination as a mother bear guarding her cub. These precious minutes that we can set aside for our dream are precious. We have to mentally prepare ourselves in the middle of our busy lives for those moments. And when they arrive, we need to throw ourselves into them with every once of mental energy that we can scrape up and use them for all they are worth.
Novels aren’t written in one fell swoop. They are written a word at a time.
Dreams are not realized in an instant. They are grown one moment at a time.
What are you doing today to make a little room in your life for your dream? Is there something that you have told yourself is a must-do that can actually wait til never? Can you free up 15 minutes to take a baby step in a new direction?
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