What If Business Weren't So Busy?
Taking care of easeness
I'm sure you've noticed it too. Doesn't it seem like everyone and their Aunt Selma has a website these days? Is the whole world going virtual?
I've been walking around—mask over my nose, six feet from anybody—wondering, "What will happen to those who don't?"
The amazing sandwich spot down the street gets a couple of walk-ins an hour, but most of their business (and it is quite busy, mind you) comes in through GrubHub or Caviar these days.
Restaurants have been relatively early adopters of the rising tide of apps and site generators for small and medium businesses. People gotta eat, after all. But you don't open a restaurant because you love designing and maintaining websites and online menus. You open a restaurant because you love feeding people.
And then one fateful day the powers-that-be decree that humans may not enter your establishment lest they may contract a deadly contagion. Your main source of revenue dries up on the spot, sending you reeling Weebly, asking Squarespace to Wix you away from this nightmare.
And they are doing their best, but it's still not your wheelhouse. Your passion doesn't have to change. We all want you to keep doing what you love. And there are a whole bunch of us who love to make websites fast, easy, and beautiful. But we'll stroll that path another time. What I want to ask right now is:
Does business need to be busy?
It's built right into the name, I know, I know. We entrepreneurs assume it's what we want. To own our own busynesses. To go into busyness. To start, to build, to grow a successful, sustainable busyness.
And I look around in these slowing times, searching for signals of what we truly need, for what is essential, and I hear about busyness, essential businesses. Many of the businesses deemed essential deliver the objects of our desires to our doors. Are these desires essential? And if not, are the businesses that cater to them?
Let's try another angle.
As we look around in these (slowing) times, as so many of us find ourselves out of work and scared for our lives, are we actually okay?
Do we need to be busy? Do we benefit from busyness or business?
Or do we just need to breathe (easy) to live (well)?
It seems to me as we sit around with all this free time abiding the stay-at-home orders of our local totalitarian rulers, we have some rarefied air to breathe, some sacred space in which we can reexamine what we need and what we want.
Let me share with you, dear future easeness owners, the questions that keep echoing in the silence:
- Do you need to be busy?
- Do you want to be busy?
- Do you want to be easy?
- Do you need to be easy?
If you find yourself answering in the affirmative, it may fortify your resolve, or shake you of an illusion to ask "Why?" continually until you smile or you want to cry. If you find this line of inquisition difficult to follow or complete, consult a local four-year-old.
For me, the first three are a cinch. No, no, yes. And the fourth was a stumper. Until it dawned on me. It was something Orland Bishop said (I'll have to dig up a source if I can find one) that reminded me of something Eckhart Tolle wrote that echoed Ram Dass in Be Here Now that channeled Gurdjieff who must have learned it from Sri Ramana Maharshi and on back through all the Buddhas to the first ape that said "I… um". It dawned on me that what we suffer from today isn't coronavirus, or climate change, or economic collapse. It's amnesia.
We have forgotten who we are, and in that momentary ignorance we have made something up about a character who thinks with its brain that rides around in a holey shell atop a tower of chalky sticks encased in meat no one can eat wrapped in skin that comes in a wide array of colors, all of whom can either make more of these no-eat meat-bags or just chase around the ones who can. We can call this story our identity, or reality, or biology, or any number of scientific or metaphysical monikers. But it's really just that: a story. A very popular story, granted, but like every story, it has an author. Someone made it up and told it first and man, did it spread, like lightning complex wildfire.
One thing you can be sure of is that the author of this story, the spinner of this yarn we now call reality, was what some now call a "man". And look what happened. Look what that story hath wrought. A culture of death, a worldwide league of cults of fear.
For those who bear and birth one of ourselves know beyond a doubt that we are not our bags of meat, but are a continuum of love that intends to play with our gifts of energy and attention. And still we forget. And many are torn from the continuum and are not able to return from the moment of birth to the blissful release of death. These of us find it especially facile to forget who we are, to become mired in the culture we create in wishful, but flaccid imitation of nature's easy, graceful creativity.
For those that made it through the wormhole, here are a few of the notable players I consider landmarks in this nascent Easeness landscape:
There are of course many more. Easeness is the new mode of contributing to each other and our world. And we will call it by many names as it calmly washes over us and soaks into every nook and crevice of our culture. I plan to interview and feature these and all those practicing Easeness here as I discover them.
If, in some strange twist of fate, you have ended up here because you wanted to build a website for your business, please accept my apologies for the egregious delay, but here are some lovely and capable platforms who can help you:
- Weebly - especially for restaurants
- Wix - for many sectors and applications
- Squarespace - for show and tell
- Shopify - for show and sell
Coinages can be grating at first. So if you find that "easeness" is rubbing you raw, you can call it easiness. Easiness.business is in easeness too, you see. But see, after the Great Reset, after this Grand Drama calls it curtains, we're not going to walk around mispronouncing a word like "business" en masse. Hence Easeness.