Are you constantly racing to cross items off your to-do list, juggling several tasks at a time, and feeling like you’re behind schedule? Do you get agitated by any impediment, however small, that attempts to slow down your progress? Then you might be dealing with “hurry sickness.” Hurry sickness is a behavior pattern characterized by chronic rushing and anxiousness and an overwhelming, persistent sense of urgency — even when there’s no need to be moving so fast.
- You treat everything like a race.
Some situations do require us to move with haste — like when we need to meet an important work deadline or get to the airport on time for a flight. Others, however, do not. People with hurry sickness have trouble differentiating between when the hustle is necessary and when it isn’t. If you find yourself treating even small, everyday tasks like shopping, eating or driving as a race, and any delay causes feelings of anxiety, you might be dealing with hurry sickness.
- You find it impossible to do just one task at a time.
Focusing on just one task even for a short time feels unbearable to you. You’ll try to figure out what else you can squeeze in while you microwave your lunch or brush your teeth.
- You get highly irritable when encountering a delay.
Standing in line at the bank, sitting in the waiting room for a doctor’s appointment or getting stuck in traffic really gets your blood boiling. You get anxious and frustrated in traffic even if you do not need to arrive at your destination at a particular time. You’re the kind of person who presses the ‘close door’ button in the elevator repeatedly. You’ll do anything to avoid wasting time, even if it makes you look kind of ridiculous. Half the time, those buttons aren’t even connected to anything but a light bulb.
- You feel perpetually behind schedule.
When you’re dealing with hurry sickness, there never seems to be enough hours in a day to accomplish what you need to do. And no matter how much you get done, you always feel like you’re playing catch-up.
- You interrupt or talk over people.
Your impatience isn’t just limited to long lines and traffic jams it spills over into your personal relationships, too. You may not intend to be rude, but you’ve been told that you have a habit of cutting people off mid-conversation. You frequently interrupt others when they speak, particularly if they speak slowly.
- You’re obsessed with checking things off your to-do list.
You love the burst of satisfaction you get when you complete a task and get to cross it off your list. But that high doesn’t last long, you quickly move on to the next thing. Moving at this fast pace doesn’t actually make you more productive. Instead, it makes you more prone to errors. This can be so overconsuming that you actually end up forgetting things or making mistakes because you’re rushing and thinking about the next task while doing your present one.