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What kind of 'busy culture' do we need?

(People's Daily Online)

14:06, October 31, 2012

Today, we often hear such complaints as "I feel so busy every day, but it turns out I have not done anything meaningful" and "I am too busy, and have to adapt myself to the world." "Busy" is like an epidemic disease sweeping across the entire society, and everyone always seems to have something to do. Even tourists tend to glance over things hurriedly, and be busy taking photos and shopping at their destinations.

"Busy" has a positive meaning in the eyes of most people. It represents the importance of a person, and shows that he or she is creating value. Being busy makes one realize the preciousness of time, and helps people live a full and promising life. Many people would gladly endure hardship if they were busy doing something meaningful.

However, there is no lack of unhappy busy moments. Sometimes, people are too busy only because they always want what others have, always meddle in others' affairs, do things in a disorderly way, or say "yes" to everything. Such inefficient and low-value practices of being blindly busy can easily lead to a vicious circle of "being busy, at sea, and blind," which not only wastes valuable time but also fatigues oneself.

Objectively speaking, today's China is still struggling to catch up with developed countries, and should not be lazy at all. Personally speaking, one may miss opportunities and lose wealth if he or she does not work hard in this fiercely competitive and information-explosion materialistic era. In such a context, one has no choice but to be busy pursuing a better life. However, does that mean we have to be super-busy every day and completely forget about recreation and leisureliness?

"Life is like a train and it does not just mean nonstop. A high quality life does not mean pursuing more wealth, but keep peaceful in the heart." Since China moved into a well-off society in an all-round way and became the world's second largest economic entity, it seems that we ought to change the busy way of life.

On the social level, in addition to develop and improve people's livelihood, it is necessary to observe their living conditions and states of mind, pay attention to the paid vacation, labor rights and interests and social protection and create better conditions for them to work decently and enjoy life leisurely.

We should know clearly why we are so busy. Is it because it is necessary, blind or active? We should ask ourselves often: How many chances had we missed to reunite with our families due to necessarily and unnecessarily busy trifles? How much time do we give up to improve ourselves? How many joys do we miss to enjoy with others?

A writer had said, "An ideal life should lie in between the supercilious laziness of myself and the endless craziness of common people." A healthy life must be a combination of work and rest and a harmonious society is necessarily both tense and relaxed. Just like a trip, a relaxed and simple trip can move people on petty things.

People should talk more about matters outside of work when dining with their families, express more interests to scenic spots, learn to say "No" when encountering unexpected trifles and avoid vying with each other on basic necessities of life and in social contacts. To any Chinese people hurrying on with his journey, do not forget to stop to have a rest and enjoy the scenery around, do not forget what is happiness and health and do not forget the reason of setting out on the journey.

Read the Chinese version: 我们需要什么样的“忙文化”

Source:People's Daily, author: Sheng Ye.

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