Beware the barrenness of a busy life. Socrates
I’ve heard many quotes about busyness over the years but the above words deeply spoke to me.
Socrates was born in 470 BC and I realize that I am making a huge assumption when I suggest that most likely, these words were physically, emotionally and spiritually felt when Socrates was older. Time, bumps and bruises are the fertile ground for wisdom to develop. I can’t help but wonder what circumstances Socrates found himself in when he recognized that busyness is futile.
Barrenness means,“the inability to produce anything of value.” Perpetual activity is very much a part of and glorified in contemporary society. Success in Western culture is defined by one’s performance and achievements so we can easily get swept away with the lure of busyness. We move through life absorbed in ourselves, our jobs, our obligations, expectations, hopes, yesterday’s problems, today’s anxieties and tomorrow’s dreams. Seems so important at the time, doesn’t it? But it’s been said that when we’re on our death beds, we won’t be saying, “I really wish I spent more time at the office.”
How much have I missed as I have rushed through life, filling my days with busy stuff?
I have“left-brain-understood” that my sense of worth and purpose, identity, love and being loved doesn’t come from busyness but so often in the day, I have experienced a sense of urgency to “get things done.”
My world has been aflutter with busyness.
These days, I am becoming much more aware of my tendency to multitask, be efficient and plan. I recognize that the greatest pull away from enjoying the present moment is thinking about what’s next in my day. In my mindfulness practice each morning, I am amazed at the number of times that my mind wanders off into the future. I constantly have to return to the breath and focus on the here and now.
The good news is that I’m sensing some improvement but like most good things, this change in my life will take time.
I am so thankful that in His omnipotent, omniscient, omnipresent ways, God is woo-ing me towards Himself and towards stillness.
More listening. Less talking. More solitude. Less drivenness.
There is joy in missing out on the fast and the more and the easy and the new that this world offers.
There is joy in moving slower and living more intentionally.
I’m good to go. Being restored. Renewed.
Being stilled and settling in just fine.
You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast because they trust in you. Isaiah 26.3