I have heard a number of speakers talk about the phenomenon of “busy” in our current culture. When people ask us how we are, we often answer, “I’ve been so busy!” I don’t think we are lying when we say it, but sometimes I think I make myself busy so that I can honestly answer, “How are you?” with “Good but busy!”
What is so attractive about being busy? When I think about my own life, I am startled to find that I allow myself almost no time for reflection. When I’m cooking, I listen to a podcast; when I am folding clothes, I watch a television show; when I am in the bathroom, I read something; when I run, I listen to a book. When I have a spare hour, I fill it with work, or visiting with friends, or working out. It makes me wonder what I am avoiding in my own mind.
In the 1995 version of the movie “Sabrina”, there is a scene in which Sabrina is commending her father, who is a chauffeur for a wealthy business tycoon, on his choice of career. It’s been a long time since I watched the movie, but as I remember it, she says that she is grateful that he became a chauffeur so that he had time to read – which is something he loved to do. I absolutely love that! His abilities and intellect could have launched him into any number of occupations, many of which would have stolen all his time, but he knew that he wanted more space in his life to read. He didn’t max out the margins of his time, but deliberately scaled them back to give himself more breathing room.
Life is so short, even if we are given the gift of a full one. Maybe being busy is distracting us from some really important things. Maybe a little time for reflection would go a long way towards living a meaningful and rewarding life. It’s worth a shot, anyway.
I started thinking about this whole reflection thing because of these photos. They all give you the sense that she is contemplating something. The photos are beautiful because of the stillness – the lack of busyness in them. They are special because stillness is not something we are very well acquainted with.
Thanks so much to T for allowing us to show these pics!