We are a performance-driven people, which means we're also a budgeted people. 16 hours — 1 hour of commute, 1 for eating, 9 for work, .5 for Netflix, 1 hour for devotions, and brushing our teeth in the car. We've got fifteen minutes here and there. Busy. Hey, wanna get coffee? Obviously: I'm busy. It's who we are. Money's tight. Time's sparse. Energy's low. We keep the fixes in our pockets, endless easy helps and hacks. Financial advisor. Scheduling app. Caffeine. What about exercise? Must make time for that too. Google: "Lose fat fast." The stomachs of our souls grumble with the question: How can I do the most, and be the best, as fast as possible?
And if we're not busy, it sends us and the people we want to impress a clear message: failure. You're not busy? You must be lazy. A loser. We wouldn't say it, but we behave that way. Ever take out your phone and flip through it in a waiting room, just to look like you're busy? To be bored was once an inconvenience — now it's treated like cancer: something to be treated at any expense, with whatever means.
The human race has never had such meticulously measured self-understanding. Mile time. IQ. EQ. INTJ. Bench press. Body fat percentage. What's your Enneagram number? Hours slept. Time wasted. Dollars saved. Percentage yielded. All these metrics give us a way to grade the success of our busyness. We break from all the labor to log into Facebook — How do I compare? We're insecure. Wow, they're so busy. I wish I was that busy.