Confessions of a Productivity Addict

Amber Ginter

iBelieve Contributing Writer
Published: Nov 11, 2022
Confessions of a Productivity Addict Plus

And the reality is we're all killing ourselves to "get ahead," but tomorrow is still tomorrow. We can't make it get here any quicker, and we can't set the sails when the wind hasn't blown.

I have a confession to make—an admission I feel most of the world needs to make but refuses daily.

Most of us barely keep our heads above the water in our busyness and meandering. We aren't swimming; we are aimlessly sinking while thrashing arms and legs because as soon as the alarm sounds bells and whistles, we are off to the races. Feet hit the shower, and brushes scrape the scalp. Food is ingested faster than the time it took to create it, and we may or may not have gone ten miles over the speed limit just to make it to work on time.

The Chaos of Life

By the time we make it to work, coffee in hand, and high heels clicking the hallways, we've already had a million thoughts. 

I need to copy these papers.

I need to check on Sarah's update.

I need to go to the bathroom.

Does my hair look okay?

Is that a missing pen from my desk?

Did someone call my name?

The intercom denotes that employees must report to the meeting room in five minutes as if we didn't already have enough to do.

Don't they understand I don't have time for this?

Really? Extra work? You've got to be kidding me.

During the meeting we are absent.

I need to go to the grocery after work.

Did I order our wedding rings in time?

Oh, shoot, my phone is ringing. 

Can't they see I am busy?

We glance down, and suddenly, two unread messages have turned into fifty. The group text we didn't ask to be a part of has blown up our phones. Our work email has gone from three group threads to thirty. And don't even ask about our personal emails we've neglected to check since last week.

Can you sense the problem?

The Problem with the Chaos of Life

Society has an obsession with productivity and busyness, and if I am being honest, so do I.

While the above scenarios do not necessarily paint my situation to a T, they surely come close.

I do not know how to rest.

I do not know how to refrain from being busy.

My mind runs in circles.

Anxiety plagues my body, mind, and soul.

And the reality is we're all killing ourselves to "get ahead," but tomorrow is still tomorrow. We can't make it get here any quicker, and we can't set the sails when the wind hasn't blown. 

I've lived this way since I was fourteen, and now at twenty-six, I can tell you it is killing me. I suspect it is also destroying many of you.

My Story

When I was fourteen, I quickly became the second parent of my home. My dad was placed on disability and quickly grew resentful. He's still in pain to this day. 

At the same time, however, my half-siblings also became problematic. Through their drugs, alcohol, and abuse, I learned how not to live, and yet how I was living wasn't necessarily right either. I turned to an eating disorder and an addiction to exercise because I didn't know how to cope. I somehow thought that controlling one aspect of my life would make the rest of the world stop spinning. 

But the world stops for no one.

By twenty-one, God freed me of my addictions, but I began to feed another monster. Getting involved in more clubs and organizations than my mind could count, I wearied. I would wake at the crack of dawn and work close to midnight. I had oodles of energy and felt limitless. I was living my "best" life, but on the inside, I was tired. With time and my willingness, God helped me to let go of good things in exchange for the best things. I felt stable.

But shortly after I graduated college, I began to suffer physically. It was no longer the inside that was tired but the outside.

Three years later, I now have what feels like a dozen diagnoses to my name. 

I am Amber, but I feel like Fatigue.

I am Amber, but I feel like Depression.

I am Amber, but I feel like Anxiety.

I am Amber, but I feel like Pain.

I am Amber, but I feel like Exhaustion.

Maybe you can relate?

A Problem Most of Us Have

It has come to my attention that running this rat race of life is the journey most of society embarks on. We're all busy, tired, and depleted. But what we don't realize is the aftermath it will have on our souls. 

Life was not created to be a checklist, so why do I feel like all I am doing is checking items off a list?

Life was created to live, so why do I feel like I am dying?

And if life was created to eat, drink, and be merry, then why do I struggle to do just that?

I eat as I go.

I'm running races in my mind.

The clock never stops.

And why is it always ticking?

Will I ever feel happy?

Will I ever stop being tired?

Will it ever get better?

The lives most of us are living are one's that God never intended or asked us to live.

We're killing ourselves with too many ministries when God only asked us to love God and love others.

We're killing ourselves to make more money when God has told us He will provide.

We're sacrificing ourselves to gods called productivity, disguised as successful and ambitious.

We're bowing to idols dressed in everything we've ever wanted but murdering our souls to get there.

We Are Called to Live

Friends, if I am being honest, I am right there with you. And this confession is just as convicting for me as it is for you.

It's pride that keeps me and you from stopping. 

From taking a break and dismantling the lie that if we rest for one second, minute, hour, or day, we are worthless. 

We are being unproductive. 

We could've done more. 

We could have fixed ourselves and all our problems.

But the reality is this: Jesus came to save sinners like you and me. And that includes those addicted to a busyness that courses through their veins. It involves those of us who do not know how to stop, heal, or get better. 

Because God didn't ask us to know how to do those things, He commanded us to follow His commands. To love Him. 

To love others.

To rest.

To serve.

To live.

In balance and harmony with one another.

I'm still learning to set aside my pride. This pride that tells me I don't need help from anyone. That I have to do it all. That taking medication is a flaw because I should have just worked harder to heal myself. That I shouldn't have messed myself up in the first place.

Yet, we are all human.

We were created for a need.

And that need is Jesus. 

As we learn to rest in His embrace, let us be encouraged by this: God doesn't ask us to live as slaves to productivity. He asks us to live as servants of the highest King. And that King? He will set us free.

Agape, Amber

Photo Credit: ©Unsplash/Tiago Bandeira

amber ginter headshotAmber Ginter is a young adult writer that currently works as an English teacher in Chillicothe, Ohio, and has a passionate desire to impact the world for Jesus through her love for writing, aesthetics, health/fitness, and ministry. Amber seeks to proclaim her love for Christ and the Gospel through her writing, aesthetic worship arts, and volunteer roles. She is enrolled in the YWW Author Conservatory to become a full-time author and is a featured writer for Crosswalk, ibelieve, Salem Web Network, The Rebelution, Daughter of Delight, Kallos, Anchored Passion, No Small Life, and Darling Magazine. In the past, she's also contributed to Called Christian Writers, Southern Ohio Today News, Ohio Christian University, and The Circleville Herald. Visit her website at amberginter.com.