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"Busyness" is a Lie

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We sometimes use the excuse of being "too busy" to get out of what we don't want to do. Let's take a step back. Think about the drunk who refuses to take responsibility for his actions because he says he wasn't in control. He made the decision to drink. And he made the decision to drink more. In the same way, we avoid taking responsibility for our decisions when we use the excuse of being too busy. That is not being honest because when we turn someone down, we are really choosing one value above another.

A year ago, my sister-in-law asked me to watch her four kids, ages 11, 8, 4, and newborn. Previously we found it to be very exhausting to have them in our home for 12 hours. My husband and I decided not to do it again. We didn't want to do it again. My first thought was to tell her that we were too busy. Two problems with that plan: she'd ask again, and it was a lie. After stepping back to consider my answer I told her that, although we love the kids, we'd decided that we could only watch two at a time. Watching all four was just too hard on us. I believe my brother was sore at me for a little while, but I haven't had to approach the subject again. I chose the value of my own sanity over helping others, in this situation. Communication is a wonderful thing; why don't we use it more?

Accept the responsibility for your decisions and base your decisions on your values. You will feel better about your decisions and you will avoid guilt. You will be honest. Remember, it is simply not possible to do everything. This is an opportunity to work on another value - humility.

Start: List your values. What is important to you?

Then: When you have to make a decision, step back. Recognize and write down the two sets of values that you are choosing from.

Finally: Make a decision based upon the importance of those values in this situation.

And be Truthful About it: If in saying "no" you must give a reason, explain what value you are choosing as more important in this situation.

Maybe you believe that you really are busy. Unless you are the parent of multiple young children, I believe that you're being a little blind. The truth is that we have all the time in the world. Be a revolutionary! Do less. Move slower. Look people in the eye. Breathe. We're way ahead of 1954's productivity, so we can afford it! Chill a little. Jesus only helped those in his path, and even he took time to rest. YOU don't have to save the world yourself! Mother Teresa prayed two hours a day. What's the rush?

I once read about a woman who sat on her couch one day enjoying her needlework. Her four year old son sat beside her, playing silently with a toy. After a long time went by, the child looked up to her and asked "Is this peace?" Surprised at the importance of the moment, she smiled and answered Yes.

Life is what happens when we "waste" time. Don't be "too busy" to live. Step back.

My List of Values

Courage, conservation, efficiency, independence, freedom, health initiative, privacy, honesty, perseverance, reliability, boundaries cooperation, courtesy, friendliness, transcendence, respect, respect other's privacy, tolerance, understanding, wholeness, perfection, simplicity, excellence, Aliveness, richness, effortlessness, spontaneity, goodness, uniqueness , playfulness, acceptance, justice, beauty, movement, reality, truth, completion, autonomy, curiosity, self-sufficiency, tenderness, openness, generosity, spirit, self-acceptance on all levels, kindness, identity, Strength, acceptance of challenge, compassion, love of self, optimism, awareness of self & life as process, love of others, adaptability, respect, control, imagination, dependence, flexibility, cheerfulness, inventiveness, responsibility, acknowledgment, gentleness, commitment, sense of humor, fear without being ruled by it, integrity, caring, genuineness, experimental, attitude.

List More Values for Yourself:


After compiling a large personal list, choose ten of the most important to you. When you have a decision to make find where these values fit in. Make your decision based upon which values would be best served. Decide which values are most important to be fulfilled in this instance.

Make a decision to focus on one of these values each month. How does this challenge you? What do you learn about your decision making process? What do you learn about yourself? Let life question you.

by Theresa Gabriel, Expert Guide and Personal Coach

`````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````````` Paths began to beckon Theresa when she was 12, visiting the Bridger Wilderness in Wyoming. Walking, dancing, and movement are a part of her, nourished by John Denver's musical challenge for her to "fly." She has walked up mountains and through forests in Wyoming, Germany, Switzerland, and Austria. She's lived in Germany and has traveled extensively in Europe, even leading a pilgrimage. Her recent walks in the Grand Canyon and Alaska inspired her to begin her dream business of "walking with women." Learn more about Theresa Gabriel and her Life Discovery Tours at her web site. Women Summit LLC www.womensummit.com

Women Summit LLC - Life Discovery Tours - Woman's Retreats

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