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Developing a Busyness Model

voluntary simplicity


time management


Boice, Robert. 1997. Strategies for Enhancing Scholarly Productivity. In Writing and Publishing for Academic Authors, eds. Joseph M. Moxley and Todd Taylor, 19-34. Lanham, MD: Rowman and Littlefield.

based on surveys, observational study, intervention programs, and workshops (Boice 1991, 1992, 1997, 2000). Boice's major recommendation can be captured in one word-- moderation, but his findings offer specific suggestions for enhancing time management and reducing stress. He has found that, in part, reducing stress involves facing several misperceptions about time management. The most common of these is that we are always "busy." Indeed, "busyness" is the single most common excuse for low productivity but, in fact, busy or not, most people are not very good at remembering exactly how they spend their time. When observed, most individuals have blocks of time that are available during the day--sometimes only 15-30 minutes at a time, sometimes longer, but they perceive these periods to be too short to be valuable.

It's Never Too Late for Time Management

While we all have our own personal neuroses, it's my experience that most people don't actively manage the content of their jobs because they have been lulled into the illusion of busyness by the steady drumbeat of emails, meetings, reports, presentations, budgets and telephone calls that constitute corporate life

Kirk Hadden. The Root of Busyness and Its Counter-Cultural Cure. Encounter: Journal for Pentecostal Ministry, Summer 2009, Vol. 6 (M.Div., Intercultural Studies, 2009) Originally presented as a spring 2009 AGTS course paper for 'Building the Disciple Making Ministry' [text] **** good

Mike Pagan, Making Busyness Simple: Do you have a Busyness Model Or a Business Model? 2007


Overall, our analyses suggest that busyness and time pressure are a fact of life for adolescents and that busyness and the activities that contribute to busyness, including free time extracurricular activities, likely both positively and negatively influence psychological well-being. The adolescents felt that their parents were very busy and that they themselves, though less busy than their parents, led busy lives and frequently experienced time pressure. More time spent in paid work and greater demands from school work were associated with increased feelings of busyness and consequently time pressure. Amount of volunteer work was not significantly related to feelings of busyness, perhaps because of the relatively low levels of volunteering reported. Interestingly, greater involvement in extracurricular school activities was positively related to satisfaction with school performance, yet at the same time, this greater involvement was associated with increased feelings of busyness. Busyness, itself, appeared to have both positive and negative effects on psychological well-being. On the one hand, by contributing to feelings of time pressure, busyness indirectly negatively influences well-being. On the other hand, perceived busyness may positively influence well-being indirectly by reducing boredom. This relationship is an interesting one. It is often thought that people are happier when they are busy (Mannell and Kleiber, 1997). However, it is likely that when busyness reaches a certain level it may translate into time pressure, that is, there is not enough time to get things done or enjoy what is being done. A subsequent analysis of the relationship between busyness and time pressure using regression analysis demonstrated that while there is a linear relationship between the two variables, there is also a significant quadratic relationship (p < . 001). A plot of this relationship suggests that an increase from low to moderate levels of busyness increases time pressure very little, though this increase is associated with reduced boredom. However, once busyness becomes more than moderate, time pressure increases more dramatically. The demands of school work were not only associated with increased feelings of busyness but directly with time pressure. This finding may reflect the dominance and importance of school work in the lives of the adolescents. The more pressure students felt from these demands the more time pressure and less satisfaction with school they experienced. A relatively weak relationship was also found between the adolescents' perceptions of parental busyness and the amount of school pressure they experienced. Further research is needed to explore the impact of the busyness and time pressure experienced by parents on parenting behavior itself. Of particular interest would be the influence of time pressure on parents' support and help with school and homework, and on the time pressure and stress experienced by adolescents.

Nubia M. Gil, Nicolas A. Hine, John L. Arnott, Julienne Hanson, Richard G. Curry, Telmo Amaral and Dorota Osipovic. Data visualisation and data mining technology for supporting care for older people. Proceedings of the 9th international ACM SIGACCESS conference on Computers and accessibility (pp. 139-146). ACM Press. [abstract]

The overall purpose of the research discussed here is the enhancement of home-based care by revealing individual patterns in the life of a person, through modelling of the "busyness" of activity in their dwelling, so that care can be better tailored to their needs and changing circumstances. The use of data mining and on-line analytical processing (OLAP) is potentially interesting in this context because of the possibility of exploring, detecting and predicting changes in the level of activity of people's movement that may reflect change in well-being. An investigation is presented here into the use of data mining and visualisation to illustrate activity from sensor data from a trial project run in a domestic context.

As privacy is a major concern in continuous monitoring, Gil et al. (2007) processed the data generated by a monitoring system using the concept of busyness. Busyness as a concept is a measure of overall movement and activity within a house, and of interactions with objects. This potentially preserves the privacy of the occupant to a greater degree than would be the case if specific activities were being identified, measured or inferred. The measure of activity, presence in locations and interaction with objects in a private house, without attempting to infer specific activities, might provide information to characterize an individual's lifestyle. The nature of the busyness, the count of movements or interactions, builds a busyness model of a person's life. This research used data from a previous pilot study at a residential care home for 9 months using passive infrared sensors, pressure sensors, door contacts and electrical sensors. The methodological approach includes the following activities: construction of a data warehouse, preparation of data, visualization of data with OnLine Analytical Processing (OLAP) technology to explore a person's busyness at different levels of granularity, and building of a data mining model to seek patterns and unexpected features in the data sets. Data that showed a normal pattern of busyness was used in the classification algorithms

William E. Scheuerman . Busyness and citizenship. Social Research, Summer, 2005 [text]

HOW DOES THE EXPERIENCE OF BUSYNESS AFFECT DEMOCRATIC POLITICAL life? My hunch is that those reading this essay might very well offer the following answer: busyness means that we relegate political activities to the bottom of a long and sometimes tedious laundry list of "things to get done." In fact, many of us no longer even bother to include the basic activities of citizenship--becoming informed about the issues, deliberating with our peers about matters of common concern, attending a political meeting, or even voting--on the list in the first place. Like this author, many readers probably feel somewhat guilty about this as well, and thus try to compensate in some way or another. Rather than volunteering for a presidential campaign, for example, I spend a few minutes writing out a check to the candidate or campaign of my choice. Even better (because it's less time consuming), I go online and provide my credit card number and make a donation that is transmitted in a matter of nanoseconds. I make up for the fact that my day is already crammed full with time-consuming activities by privileging forms of political activity that can be engaged in rapidly and even instantaneously. At worst, busyness generates political disinterest and apathy: many of our fellow citizens openly describe the most fundamental form of democratic participation, the vote, as a "waste of time." At best, it seems to privilege an acceleration of political activity: we seek speedy and rapidly consummated types of involvement that do not unduly add to the enormous time pressures we already feel. Unfortunately, it remains unclear whether even such high-speed forms of citizen involvement are normatively satisfactory. Can liberal democracy flourish when a growing number of us avoid the responsibilities of citizenship altogether, while even those of us who try to remain politically involved insist that we be dealt with quickly and painlessly?

Of course, the realists appear to have the facts on their side. (1) Even in the most robust liberal democracies, Schumpeter famously observed, "the great political questions take their place in the psychic economy of the typical citizen with those leisure-hour interests that have not yet attained the rank of hobbies, and with the subjects of irresponsible conversation" (1950: 261). Recent time-budget studies confirm the accuracy of this claim. We are indeed intensely busy, but few hours are devoted to political activities. Americans typically spend three times as much time on their hobbies as on nonreligious organizational activity, which the surveys hardly define as exclusively political in character anyhow.

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