Are You Too Busy? Read This Before You Answer
Phil Cooke

Phil Cooke

Everyone’s “too busy” these days. Too busy to write that novel, produce that film, visit your parents, attend church, go back to school, get training, read books, follow your dream – whatever. And it seems like everybody waves the “I’m too busy” flag like a status symbol. How many times have you started social conversations with that phrase? And if you have a day job, (especially for us creative types), that extra work is often overwhelming, so even thinking about launching a new project is just too much. But before you give up, think about novelist Anthony Trollope.

Born in London in 1815, Trollope was an English novelist of the Victorian era. Certainly he didn’t have social media to distract him, however living in Victorian England wasn’t always a picnic either. The startling thing about Trollope was his routine, and how that daily routine resulted in such a massive body of creative work. Just when I think I’m too busy I read about someone like Trol­lope who rose every morn­ing at 5:30am and wrote 2,500 words. Playright and screenwriter David Mamet reported that if Trollope com­pleted one novel be­fore meet­ing his daily goal, he be­gan an­other.

All while having a full time job run­ning var­i­ous de­part­ments of the British Post Of­fice.

And the end result? He eventually wrote 47 novels, 18 nonfiction books, 12 short stories, and 2 plays.

By the way – before you blame your day job for your lack of effort, here’s a post I did about other creative artists who kept their day jobs their entire lives and still did remarkable work.

Time for a “I’m too busy” reset? It is for me….


Phil Cooke is a producer and media consultant to churches and ministries across the country. His latest book is “Unique: Telling Your Story in the Age of Brands and Social Media.” Find out more at
Image courtesy Freely Photos

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