The adult of version of “the dog ate my homework”

The Daisy Patch Blog - The dog ate my homework

Ah yes. One of my all-time biggest annoyances. I’m triggered all the time by this. A little by strangers. A lot by those closer to me. And I’d be bowled over if I triggered myself as I’ve eliminated it from my language. It’s also one of the hardest lessons and principles I try to live my life by. Because the more I do the more joy I experience. The more I do, the more in control I feel. The more I do, the more confident I am and excited to be me. And the more I’m being all of those things, the more my life feels the way I want it to feel. And that’s ultimately what it’s all about right? Feeling the way we want to feel?

So, to continue the theme of the last few weeks: What gets in the way?

Well this is it. THIS is a biggy. This is the thing that gets in the way:

“I’m busy”

Yep. Busy.

One of the most overused words in our English language I believe. I hear it all the time. And hardly ever said with great excitement and zest. Mostly said as some sort of badge of honour or a badge of stress and depletion. Like “I’m busy – so I simply can’t function / go out with you / be nice / smile right now / take on any extra clients / make any changes in my life that could actually make me feel good”. Okay I’ll stop.

Yep. Bug bear.

So why does it annoy me so much?

Okay so yes, you probably are busy. And I really do get it. I’ve got multiple interests and multiple responsibilities too. We all have the exact same amount of time given to us though. And I just figure if you’re saying you’re “busy” then you’ve got a time management issue not a “busy” issue. Particularly if you’re saying it with any level of dissatisfaction.

I’m not denying that busy really can = stress. And that it’s not a ‘nice’ feeling to have. And yes it sucks that your boss is so demanding, you stayed past midnight last night, your car broke down, your Mum just called and needs you to pick up some milk on the way home, and you have to finish ten reports all before 3pm today. I get it.

I could go so far as to say we all get it.

We’ve all been there in some way, shape or form. Our own internal versions of busy. I just don’t want you to get stuck there. I don’t want you to fall into the trap of believing that busy has got you glued to your current position and there’s no way out.

If you’re not getting where you want to get right now in your life it’s not because you’re busy. It’s because you’re focusing on reasons instead of results. I believe it was Tony Robbins that said “reasons are just good quality excuses”. And the more excuses we have in our life the less we move forward, the less action we take, the more we remain stuck, the more we don’t get what we want – the results.

So when I hear “busy” I really just hear now what are you not taking full responsibility for in your life right now. I hear a reason for remaining stuck.

My beautiful coaching buddy said to me once that “busy” is the “adult’s version of the dog at my homework”. And isn’t it true? It’s our ‘big people’ word to ultimately hide all the stuff we’re a little afraid to admit to ourselves. Like the reason the reports aren’t done is because we procrastinated all day yesterday, because we felt a little unsure about what to do next and were worried what people would think of us (totally normal fear by the way, you’re human). Or that I didn’t really have to say yes to my Mum that I’d pick up the milk on the way home, I just felt like I’d be a little less ‘perfect’ if I didn’t show her I could ‘do it all’ (once again, totally human).

All the underlying stuff that’s leading you to say busy is really where the gold is. Start from a place of recognising why you didn’t do your homework in the first place and you can not only feel a whole lot of relief, you get your control back over your life.

I have so much more to say on this. Like how adopting a principle of “Taking Full Responsibility” has led me to live in a city of my dreams, changing careers, create a business I just love, and prioritise the stuff that really matters most to me in my life. And I will share more in future posts. For now, my advice would be to start small. Try spending one full day not using the word “busy”. Replace it with something that puts you back in control. Something that allows you to step up take full responsibility.


You know I love sharing the love! Start a banning-busy challenge with a friend this week, share the post below and cheer each other on as you banish ‘busy’ from your vocab once and for all! ?