Last month in Part 1: Stopping Crazy Busy, I explained how Crazy Busy really comes from what you are THINKING. That’s because what you DO is always a result of what you THINK. Thoughts, conscious and/or subconscious always precede our actions and choices.
So the root cause of being continually Crazy Busy really comes from what you are thinking.
We looked at a few of the most common inaccurate thought patterns that lead to Crazy Busy:
1. Busyness = Importance
2. More is better
3. Less is not good enough
4. Comparing yourself to the Joneses
[Did you miss Part 1: Stopping Crazy Busy?]
More Thoughts that Create Crazy Busy
5. Doing nothing is a waste of time
In our culture, we have told ourselves that this is true because we are so uncomfortable with Stillness. We don’t know what it’s like to be with our selves.
Can you just stop reading this now for a full 30 seconds and close your eyes and be with yourself while you aren’t doing something?
We have created so many constant distractions that all of us now have brains with a cultural form of ADHD. Even as I’m writing this I realize I am distracting myself to check my email, my phone, put on lip balm, take a drink of water, scratch a mosquito bite, and get a snack!
The antidote to this form of ADHD is to spend some time doing nothing. Doing nothing is so valuable to your nervous system, your brain, your psyche, and your emotional state! But for the most part, we have labelled doing nothing as a waste of time.
6. THE MOST HARMFUL THOUGHT OF ALL: I don’t have a choice
It’s easy to get caught up in thinking you “have to” do all of these things that make you so Crazy Busy. Society makes you think that. Your family makes you think that. Your kids make you think that. Your neighbor’s (the Joneses!) make you think that.
It is your life, not anyone else’s, and you always have a choice. You will harm yourself every time you give up your own power with the belief that you don’t have a choice.
It is your life, not anyone else’s, and YOU always have a choice!
But YOU get to evaluate every possible choice and decide what YOU really want. A choice to say YES to everything creates a consequence of Crazy Busy. Is that what you really want?
As you choose among the bazillion things you could do with your time every single day:
• Don’t live unconsciously doing what you think everyone wants from you.
• Don’t live unconsciously doing too much thinking you’re not good enough unless you do it all.
• Don’t live unconsciously thinking you cannot make choices to be happier and less chaotic.
Getting Off the Crazy Busy Bus
Your own subconscious thoughts are like blind spots – you just can’t see them accurately. CBT gives you a process and an objective person to help you identify thoughts that actually cause you stress. And more importantly, CBT is a process to help you train your brain to think differently. CBT helps you see all of your choices.
• Choose carefully
Don’t give away your own power by telling yourself you don’t have a choice.
Ask yourself what you really want. Make conscious, thoughtful choices which are loving to yourself.
• Single task
It is a myth that the brain likes to multitask. Switching back and forth makes us tired, less efficient and more error-prone. When you do one thing at a time and get rid of distractions, you will actually feel less busy.
• Distinguish between important and urgent
Stephen Covey teaches this principle. Some things are important, and some things are urgent. Know the difference.
Sleep and self-care are important.
Our phones and instant messaging create the illusion that everything is urgent.
• Believe in yourself
You are good enough. You know enough and you have enough. You don’t have to prove anything to anyone else. You don’t have to say yes to all the things that other people want you to do.