I recently became the busiest person I know....and possibly the busiest person YOU know. I was running two businesses (full time) and a team. I have a husband and a daughter. I have a full time therapy private practice and coaching clients. I was writing weekly blogs and recording weekly podcasts. That's not everything but I'm sure you get the picture.
Trust me when I tell you, it was waaaaaaayyyy too much, and it is NOT #goals. It’s more like, #illnessfromstress if anything.
Here's the thing. Right after I started my second business this past January (2020), COVID hit. I went into full-blown "DO" mode (for lack of a better description). I wanted both of my businesses to succeed and I wanted to ensure that we were ok financially during a pandemic. I'm sure many of you can relate.
I thought the answer was to go hard, fast, and full force toward my goals. So that's what I did.
I was working hard all the time. I didn't realize I was so busy. I didn't realize how much "work" had taken over my thoughts. I didn't realize I was emotionally unavailable (not present). I thought I was doing the right thing by working as hard as I could.
It's easy to get sucked into something, and not to see it until you (hopefully) find your way out of it. Hindsight is 20/20, right?
I didn't realize what being so "busy and productive" was doing to me or my family.....
Until I did.
My husband tried to be supportive of all the many things I was trying to do for as long as he could. But he hit a point where he couldn't keep denying his needs. I am SO GLAD HE STOPPED DOING THAT!
He told me how much he missed me since I started my second business. I saw the pain in his face for the first time. I immediately snapped out of the busy trance I was in, and I felt present for the first time in a long time. It was a harsh reality to arrive at. I was suddenly aware of how absent I had been and how much pain it had been causing my partner.
I began to make immediate changes that day.
I slowed down. I stopped hustling. I stopped being so busy. I put my phone away A LOT. I started being present with my husband, my family, and my entire life.
And you know what happened? I started to feel alive. I began to feel nourished by my relationship, my friendships, nature, and more. I didn’t realize I wasn’t feeling well!!
Now that I am more present, I am making better choices for my businesses. I do less, but what I do is of much better quality.
More importantly, now that I am present, I am lit up by the joy of my connection with my husband and with my daughter….EVERY DAY. I think about how much I would have missed if I had continued in such a “busy frenzy.”
We are told that our self-worth is connected to how busy we are. I share this episode of my life with you as proof that being the busiest person is NOT the answer…..to anything. It didn’t give me self-worth. It didn’t make me feel good. It basically removed me from my life. You can be the busy person you think you “should” be. But, I encourage you to shoot to be the happiest person you can be. Life isn’t about how busy you can be. That’s someone else’s plan for you. You get to choose what is most important. I choose my relationships and my life.
A few lessons I learned from briefly being the busiest person I know:
If you're too busy for your relationships, they won't survive.
If you're too busy to enjoy and experience your life, you will miss it.
You have to be present in your life. Otherwise, you'll wake up one day and wonder what happened to it.
You can always be too busy. You have to choose to be present.
If you stay busy and stressed out, it will take a toll on your health