Back when I was a kid, I remember hearing adults always saying the words: "I'm too busy."
"I can't exercise because I'm too busy... I can't go on vacation because I'm too busy... I can't read that book because I'm too busy... I can't work full time because I'm too busy," I would hear them say.
As a pre-teen, I found this to be quite odd because, in my own observation, none of these adults were really that horribly busy. I mean, they were spending at least three hours a night watching TV shows, watching movies, shopping for things that aren't really necessities, reading novels, and checking and sending chain emails. I knew plenty of other people who were more busy then they were and who were, in fact, doing all of those things that these adults proclaimed they were "too busy" for.
Of course, in this decade of the 2010s, this has shifted a bit from the 90s. Adults now spend more time surfing the Web for hours, watching YouTube videos, or doing things on their cell phone: texting, Facebook-ing, tweeting, Instagram-ing, Timehop-ing, Candy Crush-ing, and so on. Though we are more connected now than we have ever been, that same old habit of saying, "I'm too busy" is still very prevalent.
As adults, we have all, at some point or another, made this excuse in various ways and in various kinds of situations.
"I don't have time to exercise..."
"I don't have time to go to therapy..."
"I don't have time to try out this diet..."
Though it is true that life as an adult requires many more demands and responsibilities, there's a difference between actually "not having time" and "not trying to make time."
For many of us, when we are faced with an opportunity to change something about our lives or improve ourselves in some way, rather than to say, "Okay, I'll make time," we experience inner resistance. That inner resistance then surfaces by making a comment like "I don't have time."
This inner resistance can be rooted in a number of different causes. Some of these causes include (but are not limited to):
-- A limiting belief about how we generally don't have time for anything other than work.
-- A fear of experiencing change because that means that we may have to feel a bit uncomfortable and have to change habits.
-- Denial of our issue that may need change. For example: We have a health problem, but we don't want to change our diet to fix it because then we have to face the reality about our health problem.
-- A limiting belief that seeking out help is "weak."
-- A fear of failure.
-- A fear that we may "not be good enough" if we try.
-- A limiting belief that "we are not worthy."
-- A limiting belief that others matter more than we do or that we don't "deserve" it, but others do.
We all have these kinds of limiting beliefs and fears. We can't fully create change in our lives until we choose to face the fears and limiting beliefs that we have.
So how can we begin to do that and finally let go of the "I'm too busy" excuse so we can create happier and healthier lives for ourselves? Here are three steps:
#1 -- Recognize that you are experiencing an inner resistance. The most vital key is to be able to recognize within yourself that you are experiencing a resistance. This can be hard for many of us because we are caught up in the whole habit of saying things like "I'm too busy" and don't think twice about what we say or do.
So take the time to pause for a moment and reflect on what you have been saying and doing. Are you resisting change in your life in some way? How so?
#2 -- Ask yourself, "What beliefs or fears are causing this resistance?" Do you fear change? Are you in denial that change is needed? Do you fear that you will fail or that you're "not good enough"? Get out a journal and write down whatever you think and feel may be going on for you internally to cause this inner resistance.
#3 -- Find the time, then act! Once you have recognized your inner resistance and identified your limiting beliefs and fears, find the time in your schedule to actually do the thing you've been putting off and take action!
Then once you act, continue to check in with yourself and notice what feelings come up for you. What kind of mind chatter is going on in your head? Is it that now that you have started exercising you keep having thoughts of "I look ridiculous doing this"? Have you decided to take up painting but now that you are acting you notice all these thoughts of "I'm not good enough for this -- I'm going to mess up"?
Just simply recognize what thoughts come up for you, but don't attach to them. Don't focus on them or give these thoughts any of your time and attention. Simply recognize them, let them pass by in your mind, and continue taking action!
What is something that you always make the excuse "I'm too busy" for? Share it in the comments below!
This blog was originally published on JenniferTwardowski.com.
Jennifer is a self and relationship coach and teacher. She helps women worldwide create fulfilling relationships with both themselves and others so they can live happy and joyful lives. Click here for her Free Self and Relationship Healing Meditation.