We may be frequently caught in what seems to be, an endless state of “busyness”, to truly be able to observe anything significant around us. Our constant schedule of “important” tasks, fill up our days. We shift from one item on our to-do list, to another. We schedule our lives and attempt to “make time”. But what are we truly getting accomplished on the grander scale? Of possibly more importance, what wonders have we been missing?
Can one in complete certainty, state that a life of busyness is a life worthwhile? No. A life of busyness is comparable to walking in a circle. Each task we schedule and aim to accomplish is simply replenished in a similar form or replaced by another item we must cross off, before happiness, rest, relaxation or personal time can set in.
Now, a sense of discipline and goal setting, to monitor our progress towards the attainment of something which will bring great joy and value into our lives, is completely different than fueling a constant state of busyness. The former shows us that the steps and actions we take each day, are in fact bringing us closer each moment, to what we envisioned for ourselves. Usually when this goal or objective is realized, we grow in character or experience our lives at a level we only once imagined. We took what was intangible and made it our reality. Now the latter keeps us in a contrast state of motion, but does not usually fuel our progress.
To progress we must move forward or upward to greater experiences. Like running on a treadmill, the individual may expend the same amount of energy, burn the same amount of calories and use the same amount of their time, as a runner with no defined path, on a branching forest trail. But what did the stationary runner actually experience, what did they see, what sounds did they hear, what animals and plants filled their surroundings with life energy? Did they experience the unfoldment of nature, in it’s most exquisite form? Did they breathe in crisp and fresh morning air, only felt among the trees? Did their body have to adapt to changing elevations and unseen surfaces, causing their muscles to work in unplanned ways? Did they meet a fellow traveler and stop to chat about their shared experience? Did they experience freedom from constraints? Did they realize the blessing of being alive? No.
There is a great difference between being busy and being productive, but the line which divides them is seen only by the trained eye.
Let’s look at a common day of a student, something many of us can relate to. A day is often spent commuting to their place of learning, attending lectures, eating very inexpensive foods, continuing to study in their local library, possibly working a part time job, commuting home, preparing for their next school day and sleeping.
Now what was unobserved? If this student does not work, how was the meal they ate at home bought and prepared? If this student does not own a vehicle, how was their travel paid for, organized and carried out safely? If this student does not weave their own clothing, how was their attire bought, washed, ironed and prepared? If this student does not build, how was their shelter provided? Usually the answer to most of these questions is, their loving parents. But are these not the same caregivers, that these students say “I’m too busy to eat with you”, “can you please iron my clothes for tomorrow”, “I have work to do, we will go out together another time”, “may I use your car to go study”, “why is the Internet not working” and “what’s for dinner”?
Are these not the same beings who put their own “important tasks” aside, to bring us into this world, to experience, to dream, to love and to explore? Are these not the same unsung heroes who, despite our lack of understanding of the larger scale or our inter connectivity with all things, remain patient with us? Are these guardians not the ones whose greatest treasures are our own happiness? They are all these things and more, but above all they are among our greatest blessings. Yet, when will we notice their true worth?
We will notice when we step off the treadmill and experience the wonders of our surroundings.
The beauty of our blessings is that they are infinite and our loving caregivers make up only a fraction of the treasures that surround us. If we have remained unaware of their brilliant shine, how will we ever expect to see all the radiance that surrounds us?
Stop, look and listen. There is no treasure greater than the ones we do not seek, for it is those that already surround us, which are the supporting pillars to our palace of blessings.
Will you be kept busy today looking down the tunnel of tasks, or shift your focus to the panoramic view of blessings?
When you are grateful – when you can see what you have – you unlock blessings to flow in your life.
– Suze Orman