For as long as I can remember, when someone used to ask how you were doing, the default answer was “fine.” It didn’t matter if you were actually fine or not, that was the response.
Now, I recognize that the interaction of “How are you?” followed by “Fine” was really more of a generic greeting. It was’t ever really even a shallow discussion about how one was actually doing.
Nonetheless, today the most common response to “How are you?” seems to be “Busy.”
I think there are a multitude of reasons as to why this is the case, but one of them is that we feel important if we appear to be “busy” to others. If we’re busy, we must be in demand doing important things. We must be important to be busy.
Well, if you as me that’s a bunch of malarky. BUt there’s likely some truth in there.
Another possible explanation is that we are, in fact, actually overly busy. And I’m concerned that is too often the case.
I saw recently some data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. It showed that for the “average” adult with children, we spend nearly 9 hours a day working and less than 8 hours a day sleeping.
After taking care of other responsibilities, like caring for children and the household among others, there is relatively little time left to rest and relax.
Gee, I wonder why we feel worn down and overwhelmed?
We need rest. We need time to unwind. We need time to “defrag.” We need time to sit quietly and think. We need time to simply recharge.
That’s why we should stop glorifying busy; because it’s not glorious at all. It’s tiring and stupid.
We’ll all be better for it.