Important Things are Seldom Urgent

Japanese lady in kimono arranging ikebana

If you like Slow Food and Slow Life, you will love Kadō.

Kadō (the “way of flowers”) is the Japanese art of flower arrangement, also known as Ikebana (“living flowers”). Far beyond just making beautiful displays, Kadō is a spiritual journey, to be travelled slowly to appreciate all the things around which people often overlook because of their busy lives.

In modern life, being super busy is increasingly tied to feelings of self-worth and importance. As a result, believing that there is not enough time to do what we like is a common problem. So, we skip things, and we hurry.

All sorts of things make demands on our limited time and other resources. But, is it possible to never hurry to get things done, and still have time to ourselves to do what we like?

The answer is yes, but only if we realize that we need to be choosy.

What’s Important is Seldom Urgent

Everybody agrees that we all need to have our quality time and space, to have time to nurture ourselves and our relationships, and to learn and do new things.

All of these are essential to living a happy life.  However, if we wait to do them them till they also become urgent, it’s often already too late.

smart-phone-and-relationships

Making time for ourselves is a choice. If something urgently demands our time, we need to choose whether it’s also important and worth doing.

When we feel the urgency to keep checking our emails and social pages, it’s a choice we make — often times at the expense to neglecting to do what’s important to us.

The key is to realize the difference between being active (focusing on important tasks, even when they are not urgent) and being reactive (when we focus mostly on doing what’s urgent, whether or not it is important).

Shortcuts

All of us rush at times to get things done. In the process, we often take shortcuts, skipping steps which we “think” are not necessary to get a task done properly. In other words, we take chances, and we count on luck.

There is this old Japanese saying: Isoga-ba, mawareh (いそがば まわれ). It means something like “if in a rush, take the long road” or “make haste, but slowly”.

Shortcuts have their place. But we absolutely should not take them in situations when we cannot accept the consequences if things do not go right.

When taking shortcuts, it is not bad luck which makes thing go wrong; rather, it takes good luck for bad things not to happen.

Yuri

Yuri

Yuri is a contributing editor for Miyazaki Whispers. She has graduate degrees from Ochanomizu University in Tokyo in Japanese classical arts and Yamaguchi University in nutrition and food science. Yuri’s interests are Japanese herbal science and yoga.
Yuri

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Yuri

About Yuri

Yuri is a contributing editor for Miyazaki Whispers. She has graduate degrees from Ochanomizu University in Tokyo in Japanese classical arts and Yamaguchi University in nutrition and food science. Yuri’s interests are Japanese herbal science and yoga.
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