Howard County is one of the in the country. It's also (and .) But do we pay the price for these accolades by being excessively busy?
A recent New York Times editorial titled the "Busy Trap" discussed the American phenomenon of busyness.
It's almost always people whose lamented busyness is purely self-imposed: work and obligations they've taken on voluntarily, classes and activities they've 'encouraged' their kids to participate in. They're busy because their own ambition or drive or anxiety, because they're addicted to busyness and dread what they might have to face in its absence.
I am totally in the busy trap. It's not even that I jam my days full of endless activities and busyness. I secretly think (though since this is a blog, it's not a secret anymore) that my threshold for being tired and busy is just way lower than most other folks. I need eight hours of sleep, so if I'm up at 6 am, my head better be on that pillow by 10 pm. So when I complain about being busy, it's not that I'm competitive about it ("I'm way busier than most folks"), it's that I've hit my threshold of busyness.
Tim Kreider, the writer of the New York Times editorial later talks about how ideleness may in fact be a virtue.
Idleness is not just a vacation, an indulgence or a vice; it is as indispensable to the brain as vitamin D is to the body, and deprived of it we suffer a mental affliction as disfiguring as rickets. The space and quiet that idleness provides is a necessary condition for standing back from life and seeing it whole, for making unexpected connections and waiting for the wild summer lightning strikes of inspiration — it is, paradoxically, necessary to getting any work done.
So as Columbia and Howard County continue to prosper, the question is, are we stuck in the "Busy Trap?" Tell us in comments.