A few months ago my sister said she was eliminating the word busy from her vocabulary.
"Hi! How are things?"
It's a conversation I'm so familiar with. But why do we have so much pride in being busy.
Ask someone who the hardest working person at the office is and often we point to the harried worker who's there later than everyone else. Never do we ask if maybe they need to take a workshop on time management and maybe they could benefit from being a bit more organized: a gift basket of post-its and hi-lighters.
Despite having a full time job and a business I never feel like I don't have time for the people and things that I love.
The reality is, I've worked my butt off to be a highly efficient and competent worker. I'm great at what I do. I take a lot of pride in that.
True, having a bad ass business partner has everything to do with the success of chikmedia, but neither of us ever feels the inability to relax.
When we made the transition from an industry to knowledge based society we didn't adjust what hard work looks like. In fact, we punish efficiency.
We punish efficiency.
If I can finish something in fewer hours that should be rewarded. Instead we see it as not working hard enough. Not being stressed equates to not having anything to stress about. As a dear friend pointed out - this creates a cycle where people who are stressed and aggravated are promoted into management hiring more of the same.
But here's the reality. By working a sane number of hours this is what life gives me.
Time to surround myself with my friends. Incredibly intelligent women and men with their own success and enormous amounts to teach me.
Time with my husband to talk about feminism and global issues. To form opinions about what success looks like and the world we hope our niece will mature in. And eventually, time to have children if that's what we decide we want.
Time to explore hobbies I'm passionate about.
Time to relax and come up with big ideas.
So the next time I ask you what you're up to and you say you're working, or your busy, and I cock my head and smile, know that I am not impressed. Know that what I want from you is to hear about your passions and your family (blood or otherwise), I want to know about your life.
We are all busy, there's always more to do, but I can't help but wonder, what does a full life really look like?
I'm not impressed that you're still working. I'm too busy enjoying a cocktail and learning about how many other things in life we have the privilege to enjoy.
5/8/2015 06:17:49 pm
I know exactly what you mean , l work hard to get my work completed quickly and efficiently, l agreed with management a eight hour day guaranteed so by working in a sensible way planing what jobs needed to be done l was able to finish withing six and a half and seven hours.
7/27/2015 05:55:33 am
Nice article, Emily.
7/27/2015 07:49:17 am
Nice to hear from you! It's always worth a conversation with your boss, ask for concrete examples and express confusion. Then provide your own examples, soon you won't be negotiating courseload but salary and position! Congrats on all your A's!
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