kheru2006 (kheru2006) wrote,
kheru2006
kheru2006

Are we forever busy?

December makes one think about time and what we have done – or not done – over the past year.

THE younger folks probably do not quite appreciate an uncle like me writing this column at a coffee joint.

I am pretending to look cool with earplugs connected to my iPod Touch while the notebook is plugged to the Wifi network (how interesting that the password at this place is nasilemak).

They do not know, of course, that I am listening to the golden oldies, hundreds of them on my playlist, and letting my mind drift to a time when songs had lyrics we could understand, even if they sounded so corny.

Simon and Garfunkel are singing, “Slow down, you move too fast, you’ve got to make the morning last …”.

The young couple at the next table, who are obviously talking with each other through their smart phones, must be wondering why there is a smile on my face.

It’s December and we know that everyone is saying: “Wah, December already. The year just flew by, didn’t it?”

The analytical person in me will reply: “You repeat yourself every year. I don’t think it went any faster. It’s just a perception.”

Time, of course, cannot move faster or slower. We are, after all, blessed with the same amount of it daily.

But it is what we do with our time that is different. The choices we make and the priorities we set determine the busyness of our lives.

Is everything always urgent and important? Are we meant to be perpetually connected such that the loss of a mobile phone brings more grief than the loss of a friend’s mother?

And, why are we in such a “forever busy mode” that we cannot ignore any SMS coming in – even in the midst of a solemn occasion like a funeral service?

Do you remember the resolutions you made in January about taking better care of your health, spending more time with loved ones and taking short holidays to relax and rejuvenate?

Okay, here are your reasons why they have been ignored: No time, too busy, something else came up.

Tim Kreidel wrote an excellent article in The New York Times back in June, titled “The Busy Trap”.

Because it has gone viral, anyone connected to the Internet is bound to get linked to it somehow.

He has an interesting premise. Basically, Kreidel believes that we like to boast about our hectic lives to feel important.

He wrote: “Almost everyone I know is busy. They feel anxious and guilty when they aren’t either working or doing something … busyness is purely self-imposed; work and obligations they’ve taken on voluntarily, classes and activities they’ve encouraged their kids to participate in.

“They’re busy because of their own ambition or drive or anxiety, because they’re addicted to busyness and dread what they might have to face in its absence.”

Wow. Is he talking to me? Is he talking to you?

Why am I “working” at a place where I am supposed to relax over a cuppa and engage in meaningful conversation with a friend face to face?

December makes one think about time and what we have done – or not done – over the past year.

It can be a year of wonderful moments or about missed opportunities.

To have more of the former, it involves us deliberately saying goodbye to Busy, so that it does not fill up every minute of our Life.

Kreidel ended his article with this line, “Life is too short to be busy.” How true.



Deputy executive editor Soo Ewe Jin prefers to wait for the movie blockbusters to be available on DVD so that he does not have to sit in a cinema hall surrounded by busy people who never stop sending text messages while the movie is on. The STAR Online Home Columnist Sunday, 2 Ndecember 2012 

Tags: busy
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