Not long before my husband proposed, he traveled 1,500 miles to visit me during New Year's. As much as I hate to admit it, I was working—something I did too much of.
"Why did you invite me to visit if you didn't have time for me?" he asked, perplexed and frustrated.
Overworking and being overloaded had been so much a part of my life, that it hadn't occurred to me that it didn't just impact me. My actions were also sending the message I don't have time for you to the person I loved. I had to decide what my priorities were and make changes that authentically reflected those priorities.
My husband became a mirror for me and my busyness habit—and the beginning of my journey to take control of my time, face my fears, and make consistent space for the priorities that matter most.
Has an overwhelming to-do list caused you to relegate time with your spouse to a low place in your priorities? Do you want more time for each other, but your days are crowded by too many other responsibilities? Perhaps you're even feeling that way this week—or maybe you feel that way every week.
When I surveyed more than 300 adults for my book How Did I Get So Busy?, I was astonished by the results.
- Nearly 60 percent hadn't had a seven-day vacation in the last year
- 55 percent had not had time to have a friend over in more than two months
- 80 percent were dissatisfied with the amount of time they get to spend with their spouse.
With technology that allows us to accomplish more in less time, we've simply added more to our plates. In trying to keep up with the expectations around us, we often do too much, and we do so at the expense of the primary person in our life.1