Life has definitely been odd recently. Curious, interesting, in some ways enjoyable, in some ways not, But absolutely and very definitely – odd. For some people it’s been quiet. You hear of people who had so little to do that they have de-cluttered, re-arranged and (if they could get the paint) redecorated every room in the house, weeded, sowed veg and generally organised the garden to the point where individual blades of grass were being ironed daily. Wow. I have never in my life had so much time on my hands.
There were others (me included) who just kept working. In my case as a self-employed HR consultant, you can see that there might be quite a few questions. Ferociously busy, is how I’d describe it from half-way through March to the end of April. Although work levelled off in May and June, by July it was rocketing again.
Is being busy good for you? On the one hand its proponents say it increases energy and makes you more productive. You know that saying: “If you want something done ask a busy person”. Well, turns out that’s right. One study* suggested that being busy can increase motivation and reduce task completion time. Busy people are more inclined to have a schedule, set goals and prioritise their workload so they become more productive.
- Research shows that you are at your most creative during dopamine-producing activities and when your mind is distracted. Therefore, being busy could very well improve your creativity.
- Your mental alertness is boosted. Staying cognitively and socially active may support brain health and possibly delay the onset of dementia. Mentally challenging activities, such as starting a hobby, learning a new skill, or studying may have short and long-term benefits for your brain.
- Being busy combats negative emotions and helps you stay positive.
But can being busy be a bad thing? Yes. If you over do it.
Doing too much means you don’t give yourself time to think strategically. You may be working hard, but you’re not working smart. No one wants to end up being a busy fool. Taking the time to think about how you can do things differently means you might be able to do it more easily and faster.
Being busy takes up physical or emotional energy, or both. You get tired, mentally exhausted and feel you are on a treadmill. You get stuck. And maybe your family will complain that you no longer want to do things you’d normally do together.
It also means you have no time to develop and maintain relationships. Successful relationships are one of the most important elements to being a happy human. You know how it goes …. Your partner is chattering on about their day and you nod absently “Mm hm, aha” etc, but you’ not listening. Your mind is too busy thinking about other things and you’re a busy butterfly, flitting from subject to subject.
If this resonates with you, you need a spot of peace and quiet. You may not want to go as far as signing up for a Buddhist retreat, so come to The Butterfly Loft instead. It’s one of the most peaceful places I know.
Allowing yourself a little quiet time in a beautiful place can help calm the body, ease the stress in the mind, and before you know it, you’re feeling peaceful despite the worries of the world.
Give yourself some silence, allow your brain to rest. You might find that you can pay attention better, remember more easily, and just have better basic function in the mind after a little peace and quiet.
If you’re not getting enough (or any!) peace and quiet in your life, it’s time to make it a priority. The benefits that come with some quiet time are hard to beat. You’ll function better, feel better, and live a happier and healthier life for years to come.
If you’re thinking of staying in Milton Keynes and you want somewhere tranquil and calming, do get in touch.
*How being busy can increase motivation and reduce task completion time; Keith Wilcox, Juliano Laran, Andrew T Stephen, Peter P Zubcsek, 2016