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Is busyness the key to success?

By: Chinkee Tan

One of the most frequently asked questions I receive from my speaking engagements is “How can I become successful in life?”

This is a fact: People who are goal-oriented, determined, persevering, skilled, and focused are the ones who achieve the goals they have set for themselves.

We all know that these intangibles are essentials if one is to accomplish a certain task, may it be big or small, long-term or short-term.

We all get it. These people are so determined and so focused that sometimes we ask ourselves “Don’t these people get a breather?” or “Where do they get all that energy? Wherever they got it, I want one too!”

I can tell you with authority because I am speaking based on my personal experience. When I work, it is as if there is no tomorrow!

However, although all the “go go go!” and “hoorahs!” are needed to achieve success, it is also important to understand that busyness can be damaging in certain circumstances.

While being goal-oriented and being preoccupied almost 24/7 is noteworthy, we should also pause and ask ourelves:

When did busyness become a core value?

Some people feel that busyness is the new cool. If you have so much in your plate and your schedule is always full with different activities and work-related agendas, we feel that we are actually, and always getting somewhere.

But before we praise ourselves for being so preoccupied with so many things, let us stop and ask ourselves a few questions:

1. In my busyness, am I fruitful?

2. Do I feel fulfilled after a tiring day’s work? Or am I just tired?

3. Why am I keeping myself busy with these things? Am I busy with the right things?

We just need to be reminded that being busy is not a sign of success. Being busy with the wrong things in life will never help us accomplish anything.

In other words, “Never confuse ourselves with activity versus accomplishments.” We can be the busiest person in the world but if we are busy with the wrong things in life, then it will never bring us to our final destination.