As I was entering my freshman year of high school, my dad told me not to wish my life away. He wanted me to enjoy my high school years. But did I listen? Not really. I was looking forward to driving, earning my own income to spend any way I wanted and to be an adult. With hindsight, my dad was wiser than I thought.
Over the years, I have felt (and the most common complaint that I hear from my coaching clients is) that there is just not enough time. We all know that we each given a brand new 24-hour deposit each day. So why do some individuals seem to get so much more accomplished than others in the same amount of time? I believe the answer is that in order to accomplish more with our time, we have to spend our time on purpose. What do I mean by that? Most people do not see time as an asset; but I believe that the gift of time is our most valuable asset. It’s also an asset that once spent, it can never be duplicated or retrieved. It is simply gone.
If you are like me, you want to receive the best results you can from your time. I would like to share a concept that hopefully will change your thinking about time forever.
Let’s do an exercise. Time, like money, can be very deceptive in its value. With money, we may look at a purchase that is only five dollars per month but, if you annualized the cost, it has now become a $60 investment. Would you make the same purchase with this new information?
Now, let’s look at time. Time is very interesting. We talk about managing time, but can we? Time happens whether we pay attention to it or not. Time does not wait or stands still for us. What we can do with time is to fill it with meaningful activities. To do a time comparison as we did with money, we need to make time visible. What if you could redirect just 10 minutes a day, five days a week for 50 weeks per year? What would that mean to you? Let’s do the calculation. 10 minutes per day x five days per week = 50 minutes. 50 minutes x 50 weeks = 2500 minutes or 41.6 hours. That’s over one full work week!
Now, if you want to do something really fun, let’s put a dollar value to the equation. As an example, if someone was receiving a $12 per hour wage, that 41.6 hours would equal $500. Just think, what it would mean to you if you were to redirect 20, 30, 60 minutes or more per day?
It’s not always about money. You could also spend your newly redirected time enjoying your family on a vacation, relaxing on a beach or any of thousands of ways that would enrich your life.
To answer the question in the title of this article “Time — is that all there is?” The answer is yes and it’s enough!