During the holidays, I heard from several relatives, “you’re so busy.”

Hmmmm – it made me think, “am I not here now?” Why even make that statement? Are you trying to make me feel guilty because I maximize my life?

Should I apologize because I don’t enjoy sitting home EVERY night watching television?

Should I apologize because I find value in spending time volunteering?

Should I apologize because I enjoy traveling?

Should I apologize because I choose to live my life differently than you?

There is absolutely NO apology on this end.

If you want someone to spend more time with you tell them – DON’T say “you’re so busy”. That statement will immediately put someone on the defense. In reality, we are ALL busy but choose to do different things with our time. Isn’t that choice what makes us different and interesting?

If you want to see a loved one more often, suggest specific things to do …

“Let’s try that new Thai restaurant the next time you’re free”

“I need your help shopping for a new sofa”

“There’s a new exhibit at the museum, let’s go see it”

Being specific in your invitation, let’s your loved one know you want to spend time with them. It’s replacing the negative “you’re so busy” with a positive inviting statement. Try it and let us know if this new perspective increases the amount of time you see a busy loved one.


Niv PersaudNiv Persaud, CFP®, CDFA™, CRPC®, is the Founder of Transition Planning & Guidance, LLC. Life is more than money. It’s about living the lifestyle you want and can afford. For that reason, Niv consults with clients on money, life and work. Her approach capitalizes on techniques she learned throughout her career, including as a management consultant, executive recruiter and as a financial adviser. Her clients tend to be going through a major life transition (new graduate, marriage, growing family, divorce, widow/er, empty nest, etc.). Her services include spending plan, financial plan, divorce financial review, life strategy and professional progression. Niv actively gives back to her community through her volunteer efforts. She believes in living life to the fullest by cherishing friendships, enjoying the beauty of nature and laughing often — even at herself. Her favorite quote is by Erma Bombeck, “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I would not have a single bit of talent left and could say ‘I used everything you gave me’.”