Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Is it Necessary To Be So Busy All the Time?

I've been doing some thinking lately about my friends who are always on the go, volunteering for everything, accomplishing wonderful things, never stopping to take a breath before going on to something else, and realizing that was me a number of years ago. I've been wondering if I should now feel guilty because I no longer feel the need to be constantly busy or if I should feel enormously grateful that I can now read fiction or go geocaching without guilt. I've spent too many years working at unrewarding jobs that tended to suck the life out of me, leaving an empty shell, unable to be at home in my own body, unable to relax. I think it took graduation from seminary at age 57 after three difficult but rewarding years of study, field work, internships, and everything else graduate work entails to finally say,"okay, this is enough." I loved the challenge. I did not love the necessity of trying to accomplish too many things at school, at work, and at home. There was no time left for pleasure, for just pure fun. Those long papers always hovered in the background.

Now it almost hurts to see younger people trying to do too much. Yes, I know all those things they attempt to do can conceivably be done--the full-time career, the volunteer work, raising semi-perfect children, and so forth. The problem is, how long can they keep up the constant, dizzying pace? Is it even possible any more to get together with friends to have fun without planning it six months in advance. Is it possible to get away from the computers and other electronic apron strings long enough to learn to do things us "oldies" used to enjoy, things like playing a musical instrument, sewing, cooking, non-competitive sports, and so on? I'm ranting, I know, and will quit.

Here's an excellent article I found today, Tips for Women Who Juggle Too Much, by Stacy Wiebe. She gives many hints and tips for enjoying life more, for not getting bogged down with too many requirements and responsibilities. Just click on the red link above to find ideas on how to slow down the speed of life, to learn to say no once in a while.

1 comment:

londonartgirl said...

Thanks for writing a unique point of view. As one of those from the younger generation (30 this year - husband and one almost 2 year old) I get frustrated with making appointments for coffee dates!
At the same time I am an artist working from my home studio - raising a baby and caring for a husband and a home - so advanced planning is kinda neccesary.
I miss the spontanaeity of life where you just show up on someone's doorstep, but I also love the feeling I get at the end of a really good day where I feel I've accomplished something.
Now I'm ranting! from both sides of the issue =)