Lindsey, Director, Integrative Sandplay and Trauma Tutor, shares her reflections on the effects of busyness.
Many of us have thrown ourselves heart and soul into our pursuits, whether it’s returning to school, diving headfirst into our careers, or pursuing personal goals, only to find that we’re already yearning for the next break.
It often seems as though we’re caught in an unending race; we feel compelled to constantly push ourselves and fill every spare moment. We are inundated with ceaseless demands from every aspect of our lives. Even during the rare moments when we could potentially relax, we often reach for our smartphones and start scrolling. Moreover, the omnipresent connectivity offered by technology blurs the boundaries between work and personal life. With work accessible 24/7 in electronic form, it becomes increasingly difficult to disconnect and take a pause.
This relentless pursuit of activity is largely a consequence of societal conditioning. In our culture, working tirelessly and staying busy are often regarded as virtuous traits.
Society has ingrained in us the idea that busyness equates to productivity and that our worth is tied to constant activity.
Consequently, what happens when we do manage to pause, even for a moment, is that we can become plagued by feelings of apprehension and self-doubt, questioning our own worthiness. Guilt or anxiety looms large, manifested as a persistent critical inner voice or a knot in our stomachs and a sense of foreboding.
But if we are honest, it may not all be society’s fault. There can be an attraction to remaining busy. Let’s think about what has been happening in the world over the past few years. While we would dearly like to leave the pandemic behind us, it continues to have an impact on the whole of the world. Whether that is showing up as long COVID-19, the increased rates of anxiety many of us are witnessing and experiencing for ourselves, or in other ways. We also continue to be in shock from the war in Ukraine and are being impacted by the financial uncertainty in the UK. The continuing signals from our planet that we need to do something fast are becoming louder and harder to ignore.
Isn’t it understandable that we would just like to feel in control? And one way to do that is to keep moving.
Keep busy. Busyness can offer a wonderful way to avoid looking at what is right in front of us. And that is equally true on a personal level. Pausing would lead to self-reflection and leave space to confront questions about our purpose, values and goals. This may lead to changes in our lives. Scary right?
But continuing on the path of busyness and driven doing comes at a great cost. We already know that at an intuitive level. Deep in our hearts, we know that pausing is not only a good thing. It is a necessary thing.
So, what if we take a risk and pause?
It may well mean we reevaluate what we are doing and discover that we need to let go of some things. But is that really such a bad thing?
Incorporating moments of pause into our lives is essential for our well-being; we all know that deep down. Not simply for repair through time spent with loved ones. That time is precious. But also, because when we pause, when we do nothing in particular, we as humans spontaneously will find solutions. Stillness and playing bring us in touch with our creativity and the intuitive the wisdom of our bodies.
Let’s embrace the richness of the world around us.
The precious moments we have with each other. With nature. So, what will happen if we pause? The answer is simple: we’ll discover a more sustainable way to navigate our busy lives. We’ll gain the clarity to ensure that our efforts are aligned with our values. We’ll find the energy to keep going without burning out. We’ll nurture our creativity and relationships. And we’ll ultimately become more productive, not in spite of the pause but because of it.
Lindsey is facilitating the following courses if you would like to join her:
⭐ Online Diploma in Integrative Sandplay Therapy – prices reduced by 25%.
5 Weekend Modules starting on 2nd/3rd December 2023
You can book online here
⭐ Online Introduction to Sandplay Therapy – NEW DATE FOR 2024
Weekend of 13th/14th January 2024
🌻 Online Introduction to Working Creatively with Trauma – NEW DATE FOR 2024
Weekend of 24th/25th February 2024