In the present times, we are all busy in our lives chasing numerous goals. Most of these goals are given to us by our elders and society. However, even when we accomplish our goals, instead of resting and enjoying our lives, we set newer and more challenging goals for ourselves and then get busy achieving them. As a result, we are always busy doing something all through our lives. Have we ever asked ourselves why are we so busy and what we hope to achieve by doing so much in life? The American philosopher Henry David Thoreau questioned the busyness of modern life, "It is not enough to be busy. So are the ants. The question is: What are we busy about?"
When we rush through life trying to fulfil our dreams, achieve our goals and finish our tasks in time, we often miss life itself. We are so absorbed in doing the mundane, everyday things that we often forget to live in the moment and enjoy life. We don't even realise how fast our life is passing during our busy schedule. John Lennon rightly said, "Life is what happens while you are busy making other plans".
Our jobs provide us with our identity and prove our abilities. Moreover, when we are busy doing some productive work, our attention is focused on work, and we forget our problems and miseries for some time. Our job not only keeps us occupied but also help us earn a decent income to satisfy our needs and take care of our family. But in trying to achieve this busy life, we often leave many of our loved ones behind. We all need a healthy personal life to balance our professional life. A busy life without any defined purpose fails to give us any satisfaction. Socrates, therefore, asked us to beware of the barrenness of a busy life.
The most prominent feature of modern time is that when we are not busy doing our work, we are busy on social media and pursuing numerous other entertainments designed to stimulate our minds. Even we are sitting with our family members or with friends, we are busy looking at our mobile phones instead of enjoying the company of people who matters to us. In pursuit of friendship in the virtual world, we are missing the intimacy of the real world people.
Why are we so busy? Are we doing something meaningful and soul-satisfying? Do we really need to work so much? As a matter of act, people today must have more time than ever before because, in the modern world, modern technology has automated most of the work that used to be done earlier by human beings. Hence, we must have more time for ourselves and our loved ones. But, unfortunately, we are never satisfied with what we have. Even when we achieve our desired goal, we wish to have more.
In our desire to have more and more, we work more and more in the false hope that more achievements mean a better life. Interestingly, even when we fail to achieve happiness despite fulfilling meeting our goals, we set higher goals in the hope of happiness. What we fail to realise is that material pursuits can't achieve satisfaction. We don't even realise when our needs have become greed, which can never be satisfied. We fail to heed the advice of Mahatma Gandhi, 'The world has enough for everyone's need, but not enough for everyone's greed.'
To live a good life, we must balance our personal and professional lives. We must show the utmost dedication to our job, but at the same time, we must also focus on our emotional well being. We must find time from our busy schedule to think, rest, sleep and ponder over the purpose of our lives. We must never forget to celebrate the small joys of life. It is futile to shine at our professional lives by neglecting our personal life. Instead, we must ask ourselves whether an achievement attained at the cost of our happiness is desirable?
Real happiness comes from inside by living a life of purpose and doing what we love. When we do what we love, our work becomes a play, and at the same time, we provide the best result without losing happiness. Hence, we must have a rational approach to work. Our brain and body are not designed to work all day. Therefore, we need to find adequate time in our busy jobs to relax, engage in a hobby, or simply take a walk outside.
When we are busy without a purpose, our lives become monotonous and futile. We are busy all the time without arriving anywhere. When we are working non-stop without any pause, we develop many physical and mental problems. As a result, we often feel burned out, stressed and depressed. It is no wonder that nervous breakdowns, episodes of depressive disorders and other ailments have become very common these days. When we fail to give time to our family, our personal life suffers, and soon it becomes a cause of anxiety. A busy life led without any happiness often results in regret. The time that is gone can never come back. Hence, we have to learn the value of time and make the best use of it to create a purposeful life.
We can achieve a life of purpose by identifying our strengths and then working hard to hone those skills to achieve the best results. We must not be busy for the sake of running away from reality. Instead, we must spend a good amount of time doing meditation, thinking, and introspecting to know ourselves fully. We must also rest to recharge our body, mind and spirit. We must nurture our souls by doing what we love to do. We can listen to music, play games or read a good book to recharge ourselves. We must divide our time appropriately for work and relaxation. The most important thing is to live in the present moment and celebrate small joys. Instead of chasing more goals, let us enjoy what we have achieved in our life.
Abraham Lincoln once said, "Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe." Accordingly, we must spend sufficient time planning our lives and honing our skills. We must understand that life is for living, and good life means a life with a worthwhile purpose. Therefore, we must balance all aspects of our lives. Let us follow the advice of Swiss philosopher Jose Luis Borges, "Plant your garden and decorate your own soul, instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers".