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Everyone 'too busy' or is ti me?

(65 Posts)
MollyAA12 Sat 17-Apr-21 18:18:58

Is it me? I am getting so tired of people saying 'I am so busy' and not finding time just to phone you. Everyone seems to be 'chasing their tail' and rushing around doing things.
I know people who, when things are normal, say that they will look in their diaries to see if they can see you.

One friend (who I no longer contact) volunteers at a cathedral and will say 'Oh I can see you for 3/4 hour in the Cathedral cafe' Alternatively she will see you and then stand up and say 'Oh I must go, off to the Book Club etc.'

I have now reached the stage where I do not really phone many people because I am tired of the refrain 'I am so busy'
I never outstay my welcome metaphorically but a lot of people like to give the impression that they are in deamand and ever so busy.

I aksed one lady if she was enjoying her retirement. 'Yes' she said 'I am VERY busy',

Does anyone enjoy a leisurely time any more?

PinkCosmos Fri 30-Apr-21 12:42:01

geekesse

I have a (more than) full time job. I also have to do extra work from home. My kids and grandchildren all live some considerable distance away. I have to do shopping, washing, cleaning etc. If someone asks for some of my time, I often don’t have any to give, and I certainly don’t sit down when I have a few minutes to myself and think ‘gosh, I’d better ring so-and-so, she may be lonely’.

I don’t see that it is anybody’s business why I am not free to meet/ visit/ chat. Why should I have to explain myself? What difference does it make if I say ‘I’m sorry, I have 20 third form homeworks to mark before I go to bed, and I need to put a load of washing in the machine, and I haven’t had anything to eat today yet, so I can’t talk right now’. I just say ‘sorry, I’m busy’.

I have very limited sympathy with those who have a lot of free time moaning ‘poor me’ instead of finding something to do, or complaining that I don’t account for every minute I’m not pandering to them.

I know what you mean. I work full time and also have extra work. What I find most frustrating is people who are retired with time on their hands assuming that you are in the same position.

cornishpatsy Fri 30-Apr-21 12:07:00

I do tell a relative that I am too busy thinking it is kinder than saying I do not like her nor want to spend time with her.

However, she has not taken the hint and continues to phone and leave messages.

Shelagh6 Fri 30-Apr-21 11:45:38

Just had a good think Doodledog and remembered the University of the Third Age in Spelthorne - around Staines, Shepperton, Ashford etc. So when things start to happen again, I will join that. Thank you for the motivation.

Shelagh6 Fri 30-Apr-21 11:22:16

Thank you DoodleDog - I hate doing things on Zoom except seeing family! But, of course, when everything gets under way again, I shall make more effort but this last year could lead to nothing - but thank you very much.

Witzend Fri 30-Apr-21 06:55:28

There’s a big difference IMO between people who are busy because they’re still working, and/or helping with childcare, with maybe elderly-parent care thrown in - and the sort of people who just like being busy-busy-busy and like to imply that they’re morally superior. ‘Oh, I never sit down all day!’ etc.
Let alone curl up on the sofa with a book, like lazy baggages like me.😀

MollyAA12 Fri 30-Apr-21 06:25:27

What is life if full of care
We have no time to stand and stare!!

Doodledog Thu 29-Apr-21 23:25:55

Forgot to say - when I say 'courses', I don't just mean ones that culminate in exams grin. A lot are more about like-minded people getting together to have a structured discussion of their area of interest.

Doodledog Thu 29-Apr-21 23:23:55

Shelagh6 Would online courses be something that would interest you? There are a lot of such courses available on Zoom, and they cover a wide range of subjects. You don't meet people face to face, but you do meet people on screen, and can stay in touch after the course finishes, knowing in advance that you have an interest in common.

Check out WEA for starters? They usually run local courses in places like church halls and community centres, but have gone online because of Covid. When things open up again they will go back to meetings, but my guess is that they will continue over Zoom too, as their mission is to reach as many people as possible, and Zoom has opened that possibility.

CityLit is more expensive, but offers good courses too, and you could check out Eventbrite (a ticket provider) to see what else is available in your area. The Centre For Lifelong Learning, based at York University is now online, too, and they offer a range of courses at very reasonable rates.

There are others out there, but I only really know about the ones in the subject that interests me. If you search for 'online courses in XXX' you will find plenty in other areas of interest too.

CanadianGran Thu 29-Apr-21 23:11:30

I always make time for friends! I will gladly drop chores if someone calls or pops by (hopefully that will happen again!)

If I have a grandchild about the house, I will warn the friend and let them decide if they still want to visit (again pre-covid).

The only thing I have an issue with is time-zone differences for phone calls. My sisters live 3 hours ahead, so sometimes I will get a call right at dinnertime, or I will want to chat and realize it is their bed-time. But I will always try to make it work.

Shelagh6 Thu 29-Apr-21 22:29:00

I am quite old (though I am very sound of mind!) - most of my old friends are dead and my daughters and son still work and they are in late 50s and early 60s so they are busy! I’m not!
I’ll give up anything if I am offered the opportunity to! I moved about 5 years ago and so I still live fairly near my children but have not met anyone here my age and Covid hasn’t been much help over the last year. I still drive but I can’t find an entrée into anything locally. I’ve done my fair share of volunteering and gave up being a film extra because of lack of transport to get to central London by 7am. Has anybody any ideas because I’m free?

nexus63 Thu 29-Apr-21 19:23:11

before the lockdown my mum hardly ever called me ....suited me...now she calls all the time because she is bored, i will be glad when she gets back to normal, book club, painting class, knitting bee, rug making and card & craft alongside lunches and days out, she loves her life and i love mine, no friends just a couple of neighbours, i read endless books see my son and family every few weeks and watch old videos, i love my life and i am happy to spend days and days without seeing anyone.

Jaxjacky Thu 29-Apr-21 18:53:10

I’d rather chat to a friend and delay washing/housework/gardening for an hour or so, my friends are precious.

geekesse Thu 29-Apr-21 18:09:11

I have a (more than) full time job. I also have to do extra work from home. My kids and grandchildren all live some considerable distance away. I have to do shopping, washing, cleaning etc. If someone asks for some of my time, I often don’t have any to give, and I certainly don’t sit down when I have a few minutes to myself and think ‘gosh, I’d better ring so-and-so, she may be lonely’.

I don’t see that it is anybody’s business why I am not free to meet/ visit/ chat. Why should I have to explain myself? What difference does it make if I say ‘I’m sorry, I have 20 third form homeworks to mark before I go to bed, and I need to put a load of washing in the machine, and I haven’t had anything to eat today yet, so I can’t talk right now’. I just say ‘sorry, I’m busy’.

I have very limited sympathy with those who have a lot of free time moaning ‘poor me’ instead of finding something to do, or complaining that I don’t account for every minute I’m not pandering to them.

JulieMM Thu 29-Apr-21 17:01:54

Thinking about ‘busy’ - I’m only busy because everything these days takes twice as long! That said, I would never say I’m too busy - how rude! I will also drop everything for people I love and care about.

Panda25 Thu 29-Apr-21 16:30:13

Molly AA12, my eldest daughter is like that. For years I've had to book an appointment to see her. I think if people value your friendship then they should make the effort to call and to see you.

reelashosser Thu 29-Apr-21 16:22:30

I love to see my friends, but hate the telephone! I've always been this way, despite having to use the phone for the greater part of my career. These days I love to keep in touch by email and Whatsapp, and make all arrangements that way. The friends who can only use the telephone are the ones I have least contact with, and I feel they miss out as it's so easy to text and Whatsapp when its convenient, and to chat about tv and send photographs. As I'm a bit forgetful I find it better not to arrange things by phone as I'm inclined to forget while talking, whereas I can take my time when emailing, and be more sure of being free.

nadateturbe Thu 29-Apr-21 15:36:50

Buffy

Oh Savvy that’s awful. I think that as we get older time just seems to fly. Or maybe we are much slower at doing things so that the day goes very quickly and we don’t fit in any of the things we mean to do and friends get neglected.

I feel like Buffy. And also doing things is more
tiring. I'm exhausted today and all I did yesterday was visit SiL for an hour and a half, get my hair cut and half an hour in Marks. No housework. If someone had wanted to meet today I would have had to tell a lie and say I was busy. Things take longer to do and are more tiring. I'm sure its not personal. And I would have to check my diary too in case I had appointments. How I ever managed to work fulk time is beyond me!

Nonogran Thu 29-Apr-21 15:30:30

In retirement/vintage years I have just a few "friends." Usually legacies from work with whom, over the years I've socialised with out of work hours. Great times together.
(As an aside, what is a "friend"? For me it's a playmate, someone to share activities with outside home and other relationships. Anything less is simply an acquaintance. )
Anyway, during Covid lockdown, none of them have even texted, except 2, to ask how I am. Contact has been made only if I've texted them to ask if they're ok.
(I'm deaf, so can't easily phone.)

I conclude I am a "Granny No Mates" & whilst, actually, it doesn't trouble me too much, it's been quite enlightening. I'm not bothered anymore & won't be rushing to catch up with them.

GreenGran78 Thu 29-Apr-21 15:24:42

A friend phoned me this morning and I said, “Someone has just arrived to collect my table. Can you phone me back later, please?” She phoned again, an hour ago, just as the dog was sick on the carpet. “The dog’s just been sick on the carpet. Can you give me ten minutes?”
She hasn’t phoned me back, so I will have to phone her, and explain that I really wasn’t fobbing her off! 😀
Sometimes life really does get in the way!

Anneishere Thu 29-Apr-21 15:19:21

How weird!!! I feel exactly the same! I myself have now become a hermit- I don’t see no one apart from when I go shopping they must all see me coming as I tend to strike up chats and I can hear myself waffling about nonsense 😳🤣 I pop up to see mum who is aged 90 who has been diagnosed with mild dementia so I have the same identical chat with mum every time I see her about all the family albums / pictures. I have sisters and 3 grandchildren so I am lucky in that department. I stopped working just before the virus hit us - unbelievable as I had so many plans - I was going to do volunteer work with animal shelters and attend Art Courses - but virus put a stop to that! So I am truly missing all my work colleagues - missing the banter and the laughs and even missing the moans 🤣😳

grandtanteJE65 Thu 29-Apr-21 15:13:40

This attitude has been common here for many years - it started in the '80s, so I am surprised you are only experiencing it now.

I have long suspected that it is a "polite" way of saying, "I can't be bothered with you". so I drop people who say this more than once, unless they mean a great deal to me.

If that is the case, I point out that I would love to see/ talk to them, so will they please tell me when would be a convenient time, as I feel they don't want to know me any more when they keep saying they are too busy.

Some are shocked when I say this and do find the time to see or talk.

Edith81 Thu 29-Apr-21 14:25:36

Savvy, same as you. On my own, moved from Spain last September to be near family. They live locally but they all work, S dil,grandson. Have felt very lonely as it’s a new neighbourhood so don’t know the neighbours yet. Does anyone feel like it’s always them who has to initiate a phone call or text message or else you are forgotten.

cc Thu 29-Apr-21 14:20:26

@greenlady102 you and I retired around the same time and I must admit that I am very happy doing what I like when I like. I'm not particularly sociable (though I have good friends that I love to see) and would never take up an activity mainly to meet people and make friends. What is this obsession that people have with having an ultra-wide circle of acquaintances and a life of busyness? I had all that (to excess) at work and don't want or need it to be happy!

GoldenAge Thu 29-Apr-21 14:14:01

The last year has made many people's lives a lot busier as IT has become a regular feature and people are tuning in to online activities. More than ever, people need diaries and frankly, telephone conversations can be a drag, especially when there are no boundaries. I would far rather be honest and say to someone what wants a catch up with me that I have a specific half an hour than put off a call, because at least then we both know what time we have, we don't waffle, and can actually prepare in advance to make sure we say what's important.

justwokeup Thu 29-Apr-21 13:44:07

I would never say I'm too busy for friends, but all my friends have diaries or phone calendars to make sure we don't double-book or, in my case, to make sure I remember! Due to Covid I only have 2 appts arranged for May so I didn't bother to check and, of course, they were on the same day at the same time. Tbh I wouldn't answer the phone if I was cooking etc, as it might be costing someone money to phone me, but I would phone back. But I can't put off the school run for DGC, or appts for hairdresser, doctor, dentist - surely most of us have those? Then there are holidays, car service etc. Some friends are still working and I'm really pleased if they give up their lunch break to meet me so 45 mins is fine. I can't wait to a meet a group of friends now we're getting out more but our first available opportunity is in the summer so I guess there are some busy people amongst them!