I can remember my first report card from elementary school. Many of the remarks on it are still true today, but one in particular, stands out…
Ah yes. It seems I have always had difficulty managing the amount of “things” needing to be done in a given amount of time. As many will tell you, I’m typically 2-5 minutes late to any given event. I really don’t like this about myself, but I have learned to manage this, perhaps, better than the time itself.
Maybe it’s a gross underestimate of time, maybe it is an endless desire to be optimistic in what I accomplish, or maybe it’s just some part of my brain that’s completely missing. I always seem to be running out of time. Does anyone else feel this way?
What’s to be done about it? Not much. In fact, I would say that exactly nothing can be done about the time. The time is going to do what it is going to do. We can’t change it’s cadence, we can’t stop it, and we can’t get any more once we’ve spent it. Like an arrow, time is only traveling forward.
This brings me back to my report card and the idea of time management. If time is constant, then we can’t control it. We have to accept it and work within its confines, right? So, we can’t really manage the time, now can we?
I was listening to a radio show the other day, Geet Bazaar, on WKNC 88.1 (the BEST radio station in Raleigh) and one of the hosts was talking about time management. As an accomplished professor, she is constantly asked for tips about managing time and becoming more productive. She said she would answer everyone’s questions, once and for all: “You cannot manage time. You can only manage yourself…”
It was like I had been thumped in the forehead. The speakers on the radio went on, discussing how we can only control our own behavior, and that we have to make good decisions with our use of time–each analogy more illustrative and resonating than the last. But, that initial statement, so profound and bold. It stays with me today.
Admittedly, it is empowering to know that we are in command of our behavior. We can choose our actions and reactions. We choose how we live our lives, erego, how we spend our time. If you think about it, we can never really know how much time we are going to have…Maybe we should find it a little more precious.
Like my dear friend Crystal said last week, it can’t all be important. Let your heart tell you what is. Let’s be a little more choosey, a little more frugal with our time. After all, we can only spend it once and there is a strict no-return policy.