I wish I had more time to post on my blog, but I’m just too busy…
Interestingly, the New York Times ran two articles yesterday on our complex relationship with time and schedules.
In the first, (http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/06/30/the-busy-trap/?ref=opinion) Tim Kreider makes the case that even though we blame our jobs, bosses, finances or other pressures, much of the craziness of our hectic lives is actually self-imposed. It serves as a kind of “existential reassurance” that we have value and that our lives are meaningful.
But is busyness the place where meaning truly resides? And how much are we keeping busy to avoid confronting the aspects of our lives that quietude brings to the forefront?
Krieder reviews all of the great discoveries that occurred during moments of leisure or quiet contemplation, and wonders “whether loafers, goldbricks and no-accounts aren’t responsible for more of the world’s great ideas, inventions and masterpieces than the hardworking.”
This is a good reminder of our society’s tendency to value doing above being, and tasks above relationships. And of the way that attitude carries over into how we raise our children, care for our elders, and all the interactions that occur in between. It is also a gentle reminder that true creativity and innovation often require space and quiet.
As a nice bookmark, there was also an article about the all-too-common phenomenon of the non-restorative vacation (http://travel.nytimes.com/2012/07/01/travel/vacation-sabotage-dont-let-it-happen-to-you.html?ref=travel)
Matt Richtel describes the usual 1-week vacation experience: “three days impatient to be relaxed already, two days actually being relaxed, and then two final days of dread before going back to work.” The challenge, he argues, is to learn to “leave your context at home.”
Being truly “unplugged” (literally and figuratively), or at least controlling your access to what you left behind (and theirs to you) is a key, and Richtel gives a list of helpful hints for better, more restorative vacations.
Like the first article, it seems to come down to doing and being, and to defining ourselves as people of value for who we are, not just what we do.
Great food for thought as we head into the summer season. As David Byrne said, “Time isn’t holding us, time isn’t after us…”