Marriage Destroyer: Busyness

If you’ve read me very long, you’ve seen me rant about our overly busy lives. I think busyness is one of the biggest marriage killers we face. Busyness limits marriage growth and keeps us from doing the things necessary for a healthy marriage.

Are you too busy for quality time together? Maybe you each have some free time, but not at the same time. Likewise, for sex: too busy is one of the most common reasons given for not having sex. Another common reason is too tired, which is a result of being too busy. What about communicating? Are you too busy to sit down and talk for half an hour?

Too Busy © David Castillo Dominici |

How do we become less busy? Intentionality. Too busy is a cultural norm in the States, and you beat it by choosing to be counter-culture. The book Margin: Restoring Emotional, Physical, Financial, and Time Reserves to Overloaded Lives will help if you decide to fight being too busy. Author Richard Swenson says life happens in the margins, and without margin, we don’t have much of a life. Swenson says having more margin results in greater physical and mental health, better financial stability, more fulfilling relationships, and being able to do what God calls us to do. Paperback ~ Kindle ~ Audio

Another aspect of busyness is the time cost of our possessions. Most of what you own requires cleaning and maintenance. The more we have the more space we need, which means more expense. Money is obtained by doing work, which takes time, so any financial cost of our things results in us being busier.

I love my stuff as much as the next guy, but I’m seeing my stuff costs me a great deal. I think I’d be happier with less stuff. I would certainly be happier without the debt that comes with my stuff. Perhaps it is time to become a full on minimalist! (Check out Joshua Becker’s Inside-Out Simplicity if you are interested in this topic.)

Be honest with yourself, how does being too busy hurt you? How is it hurting your marriage? What about your kids? Would you be happier and more effective in what matters most if you were less busy? 

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2 Comments on “Marriage Destroyer: Busyness

  1. I learned this lesson years ago. I’m very taks focused. I just want to get things done as quickly as possible. The challenge is that there is always something on my list to replace the one I just did. 
    As I grow my own business I have learned to establish and accept boundaries. If they aren’t there I know my marriage and my family will suffer. I now accept I can only do so much in a day. That is something I am keen for my kids to learn.

    Some busyness is because some people know it’s easier to be busy than to work on relationships. Some are busy because they don’t know how to stop. Some are busy because their eyes on an elusive prize. Some are busy because they have not learned to be productive. I’ve been all of these. I’ve learned many ways to counter my inner drive to be busy (hence I wrote a book with a load of strategies to help with this). Besides, if we are all busy eventually we will break – ourselves, our relationships, our careers etc.

  2. Paul,

    A side thought for this article, When most people go on a true vacation, we leave our stuff behind. I know that some people take their electronic gadgets with them, but they are actually unnecessary. As I look back through the more memorable trips we took with our kids, they were void of the normal stuff we got so caught up in during our “normal” everyday activities.

    My point is that as you point out, we can actually enjoy your self much better when we shed your baggage and focus on the relationships that matter.

    Thanks for the reminder to put first things first!

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