Busy busy busy….


I need to stop and breathe.

It’s a busy month.
And it’s only just started.

I absolutely have not got time to write this. There are a dozen other things screaming for attention. Maybe I’ll get a few hours of proper work done when I get home from Rainbows this evening. Then again, maybe I’ll collapse in front of the television.

It’s not just me. Half the people I meet have a dazed expression. We just keep saying to one another: “It’s just such a busy time isn’t it?” as we share a dozen words or so en route to the next appointment.

I guess busy periods are fine as long as they don’t go on forever. I find myself thinking of the police who had their leave cancelled following the terrible situation in Manchester. The families from Grenfell tower who might have had plans for a lazy summer holiday, who now, even if they’re spared personal tragedy, are going to have to spend the next few months trying to sort out their housing needs.

In a crisis we take a deep breath, get on with it, try to help each other out. But what happens when every day feels like a crisis? What happens when living on adrenalin (or caffeine) is the norm?

Cut backs in businesses and public services mean that most of us are trying to fit twice as much into our working week than we used to. And because we then want to make the most of our leisure time, we (by which I mean me) spend our time rushing from one thing to another, making sure the kids are having a positive enriching time and I have done something that is outside the everyday, before crashing back in to it all on Monday (or in my case, Sunday).

I found myself talking to one of our wonderful Churchwardens this weekend about how we prize busy-ness in our society and how hard it is to resist. It reminded me of the fabulous Mark Yaconelli who I once heard speak at Greenbelt, saying “Do you know why keeping a day of rest (the Sabbath) is one of the Ten Commandments? It’s because if we don’t get any rest, we’ll end up breaking the other nine!

He had a point.

I don’t want to be grumpy, tired, frustrated, and hard to be with.

So I promise I will try my hardest to get some rest and not feel guilty about it. I’m not quite sure how I will do it mind you, but at least the principle’s in place. Perhaps we can encourage one another in it. Say things like: “When did you last do nothing and not feel guilty about it”

What do you think? Shall we try it?


3 thoughts on “Busy busy busy….

  1. Great thoughts! As always. Largely sums up why I’m no longer a teacher.

    Interests me why our society is mostly like this. Surely not all societies are?

    Is it greed that drives us to have to have new/exciting/bigger/better things? This in turn requires more work and busier lives. Who/what is stimulating this greed? Can we avoid this stimulation?

    Have we become ill at ease with being calm?

    What about children with their permanently ‘on’ phones/social media etc. How will they develop to be less busy?

    Time for the Bubwith commune???



    1. What brilliant questions! From what I understand (but having only had “The Spirit Level” summarized for me (I must read for myself one day!!!)), more equal societies seem to feel less need to be competitive and have higher levels of mental health and happiness. How we become one of those countries is a big question!!! I suspect the problem is that we are all quite reluctant to give up what we see as our privileges, even if that would lead to greater happiness all around in the long run. So yes – I think greed is a thing, but I suspect it is all tied up with fear and anxiety as well. How to change? Time out, I think – Sabbath for the new era. Regularly planning to do nothing where you don’t have to be achieving, and sticking to it and celebrating it. But within present culture, really really hard. We keep trying to do it and failing… And I think probably means making some counter cultural choices and raising a few eyebrows. Maybe a commune is the way forward 🙂 🙂


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