Monday, December 21, 2009

I'm too busy.

It must be the time of year this thought comes up. There's not even a trigger this year, I've just been thinking about it. I wrote about it around this time last year HERE.

This is a busy time of year for many, if not all, of us. Gifts to buy and wrap, parties and family gatherings to attend, pictures to take, cards to address and send. It can all get very overwhelming. And there are days when I think I can't do it all. But I do get it done. If there is something that doesn't get done, it's generally not anything anyone but me will notice.  And there are times where I choose sleep over other things.  But I will admit it, I won't blame it on something else.

So this time of year, for whatever reason, my thoughts are about the excuse we so often hear all year long when someone can't/doesn't/won't do something - the "I'm too busy to ..." excuse. There are times when that excuse is 100% legitimate. There are times when there is JUST.TOO.MUCH.TO.DO. But it seems more often than not, it's the easy way out. And those who use this excuse, often exclusively, lose their credibility. Honestly, I would rather just hear "No thanks" or "We won't be able to make it" or "My boss won't give me the time off" or even "I don't want to." When I repeatedly hear "I'm/we're too busy," I often feel the flip side of that is an implication that people must think that I/my family am/is not busy at all, that I am a lady of leisure, otherwise I wouldn't be asking others to do X (fill in the blank with an event, show, gathering, party, family/life milestone, etc.).

I have really been monitoring my "busy" meter. I have people often tell me "I don't know how you have time to do that." I have realized recently it is NOT about HAVING time, it's about MAKING time. Did I have time to take care of those 100+ Christmas cards I sent. Not really. But I MADE time for them. I actually took them to work so I could get some of that project completed during any down time. I had no down time, but it was a good idea. The things that I could say "I don't have time for" I really am not making time for because it's not high enough on my list of priorities to get into the "make time" category. And sleep often does make it into the high priority category!  That's ok, but call it what it is.

So from now on, when someone tells me they don't have time for something, depending on where my bitch level is measuring at that moment, I may respond with "No, you don't want to MAKE the time. No one HAS the time." Really, who has time just laying around, waiting to be used? I don't know anyone that has that luxury.


  1. This same thought occured to me the other day while waiting for a response to a dinner invite.

    Now, I have to go do my Christmas cards, darn it. Your post has guilted me into it :-)

    Merry Christmas!!!!

  2. Ha. I use the I don't have time excuse in order to avoid hurting feelings. If they knew I had time and just didn't want to...well, you know.

    Of course my feelings get hurt if someone tells me they don't have time. What goes around comes around.

    On that happy note...Merry Christmas!! I will always make time to visit you. ;)

  3. Ahhh...a longstanding dilemma. And we use the baby excuse. :)

  4. That seemingly snarky comment has been part of my repertiore for the last two years. I always make sure that when I use the phrase, it's "I didn't make the time to do such and such," instead of "I didn't have time to do such and such." And when others use the too busy excuse, I hit 'em with your retort. Good for you!