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"When Did Being 'SO BUSY' Become a Badge of Honour?"

In the September issue of Cosmopolitan India, Editor Nandni Bhalla explores the importance of being 'un-busy' and the many benefits of slowing down...

How busy are you right now? Too busy to finish that book, spend adequate time with family and friends, sit alone with your thoughts?

Of course, everyone’s busy these days. It’s the nature of the game...so many places to be at and so many people. The rat race. And our phones don’t make things easier, do they? With message notifications and snappy social media feeds and information overload, our brains rarely have a moment to relax. And FOMO is now an acceptable part of our everyday dialogue, pushing us to do more than ever before...and still, feel like we are not doing enough. 

It’s all about speed, urgency, and feeling like we deserve to do, see and experience it all. I often think that many of us revel in the idea of being busy. Perhaps it makes us feel like we’re important and worthy if we barely have time to eat our meals or get a good night’s rest. And so we go around saying things like, ‘I’m sorry, I’ve just been so busy!’ or  ‘I wish I had more time to do that!’.It’s almost a brag. A badge of honour. 

But here are the big questions: 
does being busy mean we are being more productive? And while we have full schedules, are we even using our hours in the best ways? We’re always in a hurry, but do we know where we’re going? 
While you ponder over those, I’d like to talk about the importance of being un-busy. Of having fewer things to do. You see, when we’re caught up in a constant flurry of doing, we’re not giving ourselves time to rest, connect, and introspect. When we’re in a rush, we can be less thoughtful and compassionate. When we’re chasing goal after goal, we can sometimes forget to enjoy the successes we have already collected. 

Sometimes our bodies will tell us that we need to slow down by falling sick or creating anxiety. Sometimes, the signs include feelings of being overwhelmed or lost. And sometimes, we may be doing many things, but not experiencing the joy we thought we would. The benefits of slowing down are many. One, you will sleep better, which equals better immunity, clearer thinking, (and even weight loss). And two, when your mind is not jumping from one thing to another, you allow it to focus on what truly matters. The goals that need more attention, the people that are worth getting to know better, the hobbies and activities that will soothe your soul and refresh your being. Let’s try being un-busy for a while, shall we? By saying ‘No’ more often and not tying our self-worth to party invitations or always having a million things to do.

Now take a deep breath and slow down. Doesn’t that feel good?