A Facebook friend recently posted this article from the New York Times and I’d like to offer it up as food for thought. The piece is over a year old, but the idea of the “busy trap” is nothing new.
It’s easy to read the article and think, “Of course this guy doesn’t have to be busy. He’s a professional writer. He works for himself. He has the freedom (and probably the funds) to set his own schedule!”
But, the truth is, whether we’re rich or poor, cramming in 60 hours a week at the office or sauntering into Starbuck’s at 10:00 AM to sit down to our laptop for a few hours of work, we’re probably much more in control of our level of busy then we care to admit. We don’t really fall into the busy trap so much as jump…with our eyes closed…and without a parachute.
So next time you feel yourself being pulled into something you really, really don’t want to do, ask yourself, “Is this really necessary?” Maybe your answer will be a resounding, “Yes. This is important to me because ____________.” But on the other hand, maybe you’ll find yourself deciding to skip out on yet another pointless meeting. And, if you do, maybe then you’ll find yourself, quite pleasantly, doing nothing at all.