The Temple of Busy and searching for apartments

August 31, 2020 by Ted Bauer

The "Temple of Busy" is not necessarily some common, SEO-friendly term. I have seen it used hundreds of times in different articles, though. It refers to the idea that "busy" or "being busy" is almost a currency of the modern age. Back in olden times when we predominantly worked in offices, if you walked past a co-worker and asked them how their day/week was going, what was the de facto response? Oftentimes it's "slammed" or "so busy." We have a natural tendency towards busy. Don't believe me? That's OK. I even have some research on how busy we all feel. 

Some Temple of Busy research

This is a bit old -- 2016 -- but references specifically why Americans are obsessed with being busy, noting that "leisure" used to be a status symbol, but "busy" replaced it as a status symbol, largely because of "the development of knowledge-intensive economies." In short, employers want competence and ambition, and the eye test for competence and ambition is someone who appears to be, or claims to be, busy all the time. Because if you're busy, clearly other people are giving you stuff to work on, and you must have the ambition to want to do all that work. 

The problem with "Temple of Busy," of course, is that busy does not necessarily mean productive. You can have a massive to-do list and check off lots of tasks, but that doesn't mean you're doing the right things for your life at the moment. Maybe you really need to focus on a new place to live (more in a second), eating healther, or getting certified as a teacher. But instead you're focused on sending emails for your boss. It serves an immediate need of hitting targets for a boss and getting income, but it's more busy work than productive work, in the grand scheme of things.

Perhaps a bigger problem is health. There's legitimate concerns that The Temple of Busy is making us fatter. People feel drained by work -- perhaps even moreso during COVID -- and don't have time to cook wholesome, natural ingredient meals. Look at UberEats, actually. Last quarter, they made more money than Uber itself. That's logical in the sense of people being potentially afraid to ride in cars that close to a driver + restaurants being closed, but when food delivery is doing billions of dollars, and most things on UberEats are not necessarily healthy, that's a legit concern. 

In sum, the idea of being busy -- the physical and psychological reactions to it -- are akin to, well, being high. Whether you really are busy or you're flexing on busy to seem more relevant, busy is still tremendously powerful as a state for many people. So, we pursue it. It's logical. 

What does this have to do with apartment searches?

Well, a lot of times, our process with clients will begin with us preparing a list based on price point/desired geo. When we reach back out to see if you've considered the list, one of the first response is typically "I haven't. I'm too busy." 

We get it, for all the reasons above.

But here's the thing: you can keep being busy. We'll work the list for you. We'll talk to the complexes and get availability, specials, offers, remote touring info, different move-in info re: COVID, and more. We'll put together everything. All you need to do, ultimately, is drive over and check out the complex or take a virtual tour. 

We realize you're busy, but this is also the roof over your head -- so you can find the time to do that eventually. 

You beat back The Temple of Busy in 1 of 2 ways: 

(1) Better prioritization, which is hard if you're juggling work, friends, family, pandemic, income, etc. Doable, but hard.

(2) Outsource or delegate some of what makes you busy. 

We exist in the (2) bucket, so feel free to holler at us and reduce your "busy" as you look for the right spot for 6,9, 12, 18, or 24 months. 



About the Author

Ted Bauer

Ted Bauer is a writer/editor for White Rock Locators focused on as much cool content about the DFW Metroplex rental scene as he can possibly find week-to-week.