03/25/2015 05:11 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Busyness Is a Disease... and It's Contagious!


We are a nation of busy. We compare notes and horror stories about whose weekend is more jam-packed. When someone asks us naively at the QuikStop... "How are you?" we annihilate them with bullets that are our to-do list of the day. We are likely to answer with something like "Ohhhhhh MY God! I'm sooooo busy! Let me tell you how BUSY I am..." And we rattle off all of the places we have to be and things we have to do.

All of this done with an air of disgruntled disgust instead of joy at our opportunities we chose ourselves. Then the other person has to one-up your busy with their busy. No wonder we are all grabbing energy drinks and coffee.

What are we all so busy doing? Why do we act like we deserve some prize for how hard our life is? Do we find joy in being busy? Is exhaustion a badge we respect and honor? Or is being busy a big, ugly disguise, a cover up for our lack of joy, our nagging lack of meaning eating at us?

If a day of back to back kid's sports activities, church and family functions was not our idea of how to spend our weekend, then why are we spending our weekend that way? I thought we were the adults now.

I've been guilty of saying at one time years ago, "If my life moved any faster I'd need a race car crash cage and a helmet!" Thank God I finally burnt out.

What's this all for? Why?

My answer: so we don't have to feel.

Feel what?

Feel the urgency, the pain, the beauty, the joy, the fleeting moments and the passing years. Our temporary nature. Feel what we see in the news. Feel what is going on with the family down the street we know battling cancer. Feel our parents aging, our kids growing.

We are fearful of missing moments with our children so we fear how sweet, beautiful and temporary all the fleeting moments of true connection are. So in a panic we manufacture 10,000 moments for the fear of sinking too deeply into just that one that will pass us by too quickly, reminding us once again of our humanness.

In our relationships we are fearful of the silence and loneliness with another in which we are barren and exposed, so we fill up our moments madly. We fill our calendar with couples and parties, alcohol and food, sports and shows, sexy distractions and vacations in sun shinny places.

Stillness is telling. Silence stirs the truth. We are afraid to be still. Afraid of what we will hear if we brush aside the noise and instead pick a few beautiful, slow, still moments to witness in full depth, full glory.

We are afraid of our lacking worth so we spin around in circles distracting ourselves and everyone around us, proving our worth futilely in our busy lives while our real life is slipping right by us... unnoticed quietly tiptoeing right around us waiting for us to be still enough, brave enough to have our souls stirred to their core.

I challenge you to try a different way. See what happens. Face the fear and feel your life. Clear your calendar of the clutter and give yourself a chance to feel your way through the moments instead of cracking the whip on them like a race horse you are trying to break in.

See what happens. I dare you. I dare you to un-busy your life.