The Addiction Of Crazy Busy

Does it seem that so many of us out there wear a busy-ness badge of honor? This is what the attitude seems to be… I am busy, therefore I am important and valuable, therefore I am worthy. And if I am not busy, forget it. I do not matter.


addicted to being busy

As a culture, we shame people who are addicted to drugs and alcohol, but somehow we have normalized…even praised, the addiction to busy-ness.

Are we really doing ourselves any favors by staying so busy? Or, is being busy a compulsion? Perhaps, it’s a way to avoid your feelings?

In Daring Greatly, Brené Brown writes about numbing behaviors that we use as armor against the vulnerability. Does numbing apply to you? She states; “One of the most universal numbing strategies is what I call crazy-busy. I often say that when they start having 12-step meetings for busy-aholics, they’ll need to rent out football stadiums.”

What could happen if we slowed down? If we stopped numbing ourselves? What would it look like? Because I suddenly have more downtime, I find myself faced with the time to reflect upon my life. But facing my life is not always so pretty.


When we get off the treadmill of busy-ness, we are forced to notice what comes up when we are not so busy. What is left in the silence are the things we do not necessarily want to look at…like the things that accompany the unsettling truths of your life. It’s hard to learn when to take a break from something.


There are people out there that spend a great deal of time meditating during the day. Could you handle that level of inaction? Who would you be if you were not busy accomplishing stuff? Who would you be if you were okay doing “nothing” for hours on end? Even scarier, what truths would you have to face that you can effectively avoid facing being crazy busy?

It is difficult to make that step toward change. I attach myself to the philosophy of slow and steady wins the race. You can start off small and slow. I recommend scheduling “you time” for five minutes each day for a week. That is it. Just five minutes of sitting in quiet. No buzzing, no watch, no dings…five minutes of closing your eyes, sitting in a comfortable position and focus on your breathing. In through the nose…out through the mouth.

This exercise can help with focus, clarity, and purpose. Try it.


What is the cure for busy-ness addiction?

There are two types of crazy-busy.

The first being a passionate action. Being busy with something that you are passionate about.  It can feel soothing at times to get wrapped up in our passion. It is still important to take time and connect with yourself and to move around your world.

The second type, which is the most common, is the crazy-busy numb-er. This is the one we have been exploring. The one who is using the addiction to numb and avoid. The one who is hiding.

A good first step to discovering the solution is to ask yourself some questions:

Are my choices comforting and feeding me in a positive way?

Do my choices leave me feeling empty and searching for something more?


every day is a fresh start

Be honest with yourself.

What is really behind your on-going, overwhelming, to-do list?

How could you care for yourself in a more productive and positive way?

Nothing happens overnight. We know that. Awareness is the first step to any growth, to any change. Have you gained awareness?