Why dealing with an extremely busy schedule can be hard

Extremely busy schedules are something that nearly all of us go through from time to time. Whether you are currently at school, working a full-time job, or having family responsibilities, most of us have things that keep us busy. Being busy but not overwhelmed is good in a way, as it means that you have things to do and are not bored. However, there are times where we are ridiculously busy to the point where we become overwhelmed and stressed. Dealing with schedules like these are difficult and in this blog post, I will talk about 4 reasons why it can be hard handling an extremely busy schedule.

Lack of respite from the constant pressure put on you

The way I sometimes think about extremely busy schedules is that pressure is being put on you from lots of different angles. This can be difficult to deal with because it can feel like you are under pressure all the time. When you are extremely busy, even if the pressure slightly reduces or even stops from one angle, there is always something else that is putting you under pressure. A good example of this is my time at university. When I was at university, I often was balancing job applications, academic deadlines, society committee positions and my social life at the same time. This made my schedule very busy, and was such that even if there was a week where I didn’t have much on in terms of academics, I would be busy with something else which meant that the pressure was still there. Constant pressure doesn’t mean that the pressure is coming from one specific thing, it means that the pressure is always there in some shape or form. Note that not all busy schedules involve a lot of pressure, a classic example is going on a tourist holiday where you have a lot of sightseeing to do in a short space of time. However, constant pressure plays a big part in the majority of busy schedules.

It is so easy to feel guilty about free time

I am one of those people that encourages people to take time for themselves and do things that they enjoy, however I do appreciate that this can be hard at times. When you are ridiculously busy, it can be the case that you are conflicted when it comes to taking time for yourself and relaxing. On one hand, you know that having time to do things you enjoy and relaxing is good for your wellbeing. On the other hand, you can feel guilty and think that any free time is unproductive, as it is time that is not being spent working on the many things that need to be done. The feelings of guilt can be worse when some of these tasks that you need to do are urgent or have a tight deadline. One of the things that I want to work on over the next few months is striking a good balance when it comes to doing the things I enjoy and doing things that needs to be done (such as my full-time job), so that I feel less guilty about free time.  

There are things that you may have to sacrifice that you may not want to

We are all human, and therefore there is a limit to what we can do in a day. That means that there will be times where we cannot do everything that we want to do in a given time period. Hence, we will need to let go of some things that we don’t have the capacity to take on, and some sacrifices have to be made. For example, when you are going through a really busy period at work, that may involve working overtime and maybe weekends, which means you may have to limit your social life during that busy period as you simply may not have the time. Furthermore, a point that I want to make which is important is that very busy schedules can be overwhelming and mentally draining. This means that even if there are certain things such as socialising or doing certain hobbies that you technically can set aside time for, you may not have the mental capacity to do those things. In summary, when you are very busy, there may be things that you really want to do, but the lack of time or mental capacity could prove a barrier. 

It is easier to get frustrated when things take longer than expected or when things come up unexpectedly

An extremely busy schedule is overwhelming enough as it is, and the last thing you want is things to happen that give you additional stress. Indeed, when things come up that add to the pressure/stress, it is very easy to get frustrated. One example of something that can add to the pressure is when things take longer than expected. I have had that several times in my job where something that I thought would take 15 minutes took over an hour. Another classic example of things taking longer than expected is the commute back home after a working day, where sometimes a 1 hour expected commute takes 2 hours or more due to things such as train delays. Often, these things are out of our control, but it can really mess up our schedules where free time is at a premium.

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