Don’t miss out on the journey

Most of my friends are retired. And at the same time, most of my friends are terribly busy. The same is true for me.
It seems like an oxymoron!
How did I ever work eight hours a day, do my housework, make meals, sit on committees, give speeches, invite friends in once or twice a week, and have time to sleep a few hours every night?
I still remember the wonderful feeling of freedom when I suddenly decided to retire.
The whole day was mine. I finally could write for fun and go through the boxes in our basement. I could garden, invite friends in for morning coffee, and sit in the library as long as I wanted.
But that seems a long time ago!
Unfortunately, I still haven’t sorted the boxes in the basement, rarely have morning coffees with friends, and I’m just as “busy” as I was before retirement.
Actually, my “to do” list gets longer and longer every week.
Obviously, a person may slow down a little bit as you get older, but that doesn’t explain my “busyness.”
In her book “How Did I Get So Busy?” Valorie Burton writes, “The reality is that everyone feels pressed for time.”
Working or retired, everyone is the same–we’re all too busy!
No wonder I couldn’t wait to read Burton’s book. The full title is “How Did I Get So Busy? The 28-Day Plan to Free Your Time, Reclaim Your Schedule, and Reconnect with What Matters Most.”
Now it so happens that I have an odd way of reading a book. I often read the last chapter first, followed by the first chapter and then dip inside.
This time my curious habit paid off!
In this book, chapters are called Days–28 days to be exact. Day 28 was entitled “Don’t Miss the Journey.”
“Busyness steals the opportunity to enjoy the journey of life,” warns Burton. After all, which is most important–completing your long “to do” list or making sure you are enjoying every day of the journey?
Day 1 is entitled “There Is a Better Way.”
Burton begins with “Since you are reading this book, you likely recognize that your current lifestyle of busyness is taking its toll.”
That’s a good beginning for most people, and she goes on to say that being “busy” is characterized by being unavailable for anything or anyone. In other words, you’re too busy to priorize!
As for dipping in the middle of the book, I was intrigued by Day 7: “Have Fun at Least Once a Week.”
Life can be mundane and hard if you don’t have fun.
Burton admonishes, “Choose what you really want to do, not what you think you ‘should’ do.” And get started now, she says.
“Do something TODAY purely for the fun of it.”
That’s the whole point of “How Did I Get So Busy?”–letting go of having to be “busy.”
“I have discovered that it isn’t about how much time you have, but how you use the time you have,” says Burton.
So priorize, get rid of the trivial, and make sure you are using your God-given time on the most important things.
Let go of “busyness” and enjoy the wonderful journey of life!
Marie Snider is an award-winning health care writer and syndicated columnist. Write her at thisside60@aol.com or visit www.visit-snider.com

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