Do you remember your life 4 months ago? Most people can scarcely recall their life before the pandemic and how incredibly busy they were. Fighting traffic jams to commute to work, long work hours to meet deadlines, rushing our children to innumerable activities, endless shopping even when we don’t really need anything, especially during the holidays and waiting for the next vacation.
The fact is that a lot of us were living busy, stressful lives for no reason at all other than to fill our time because we dread not being productive and accomplishing something in our work or business. Productivity, however, is not about filling up every minute of the day but about doing the right things at the right time to leverage your efforts in the most effective way towards a certain goal.
Now that many of us are working from home, may be underemployed or even unemployed and our children’s activities have been taken away, we can take time to reflect. Did we really gain anything from being so busy? If you ask this question truthfully and scrutinize your life you will realize that busyness did nothing but aggravate your stress level.
The fact is we can get more done at work with less time and effort as some of what we were doing, we were probably not doing as efficiently as possible. Our children do not need to be in every single activity such as hockey, soccer, football, martial arts, music lessons, debate team or whatever other activity parents put their children in. They can focus on a few activities and do well with them so they can have more free time to truly enjoy their lives.
What the pandemic has shown us is that being busy is not a badge of honour but a road to chronic stress, anxiety, depression, harmful addictions and chronic disease. So, as we approach various stages of pandemic recovery and our lives start to go back to the way they were, take a good look at where you’ve been and where you are right now.
Decide now what you must eliminate in order to create more space in your life for the things that matter, family, children, hobbies and enjoying a moment of silence. Use this time to restructure your life for greater health, joy, relationship and serenity. We are being told that our lives have permanently changed and will never be the same so let’s use this time to ensure that they change for the better!
Dr. Nauman Naeem