Spare Capacity

Benefits of Spare Capacity

Operating with spare capacity provides a lot of things. Insurance, peace of mind, the ability to respond to the unforeseen, and endurance. It is hugely helpful to have spare time, spare financial resources, and spare emotional capacity. Remember, however, it’s all just time. 🙂

The False Virtue of “Busyness”

It has somehow become a badge of honor to be busy. The busier the better. The downsides to this are too numerous to list. Three big ones are:
A. Shorter lifespan
B. Inefficiency
C. Being unreliable
It is often accompanied by the unpleasant feeling of doing many things and doing none of them particularly well. It is a bit like sprinting all the time. Figuratively speaking, the “over-busy” person is often emotionally (and sometimes physically) “out of breath”.

Balance Over Busy

We use other names for spare capacity…”white space on the calendar”, “savings in the bank”, “psychological resilience”. Let’s resolve to build and maintain spare capacity. We can do this by consciously planning a balance of work and play and rest. This “balance over busy” approach will give us strength and commitment when adversity comes – whether it comes to us, to others, or to our communities.

  • Jeff Linroth Longmont


  1. ML says:

    What a difference a reserve makes. You can’t run at 104% continuously.

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