Time. On one hand, it seems a limitless resource and on the other, it appears as if there is never enough. How do you value and make the most of your time?
What if you saw someone burning money (literally), buying frivolous things, or otherwise foolishly wasting money. What would you think? Most would see them as crazy! However, we witness people, including ourselves, wasting something much more valuable every day: time.
Why do we think nothing of wasting time, but think wasting money is crazy? Time has the greatest value, because once it’s gone you can not get more of it. Facebook, long drawn-out meetings or years spent waiting to do something important “someday” are just a few actions, or in-actions, that may be more damaging than burning money. Why the double standard?
William Penn brilliantly summed up it up in this statement, “time is what we want most, but what we use worst.”
Despite the fact that time is the one thing we want the most, very few of us use our time wisely, consistently. It’s easy to get sucked in to scrolling through social media, procrastinating, or delaying a big decision. How often do you have a busy day and then, just before bed, realize you can’t remember what you actually accomplished? There is a huge difference between being busy and being productive.
Each day millions of people chase techniques and tricks that promise to find more hours in their day, while others rely on sheer grit and willpower. There are no magic bullet points or supreme spreadsheets that will magically help you free up more time.
Many people think they can will their way to success by multitasking, even though studies show this practice is counterproductive. Some people try sleeping less, working harder, etc. We can make changes through grit and determination, but it’s a struggle. The second we take our eye off the ball, we slip back.
Willpower works well enough so that it appears if we only try harder, it would really work. We think if we are better at it, we will be successful, but even the toughest and strongest lose steam. We aren’t the problem. The way we are going about it is. We want more time. We want to use our time better. We can try and try, but putting our nose to the grindstone is only going to get us so far. This is not a long term tool for success. Instead, a change in mindset can bring about effortless change and is suitable for long term efforts.
In March I disabled my Facebook account. It was much harder than I imagined. I hadn’t realized what a habit scrolling had become. The first week I found myself mindlessly reaching for my phone. It wasn’t that I was wondering what my friends were having for lunch, rather it was a deep seated habit. Staying unplugged was tough and it took willpower.
After about a month, I realized how full my life had become without social media. I was more productive, at ease, and relaxed. Around the 4-6 week mark, I had amazing clarity and no longer felt I was missing out. In fact, I realized that for years I had been missing out by wasting so much time on social media. An important change occurred; I had an insight. It was an awareness of a different way of seeing things and it brought about new thought. I just “got it” and it was no longer a struggle to limit my social media time. I rejoined and have enjoyed occasionally connecting without the urge to mindlessly scroll.
Awareness is not about looking for something better; it’s having a different perspective of the world you are living in. It’s not overcoming habits so that you can make a change. It’s as simple as looking from a different point of view and noticing what is there.
“We shall never have more time. We have, and have always had, all the time there is.” Arnold Bennett
Here are three ideas on making the most of all the time there is:
- Realize what is important to you and what you want to create in the world. Prioritize around this
- Notice your state of mind. Operating from the mindset of well-being brings a higher level of clarity, creativity, and ingenuousness that opens doors of opportunity and a further abundance of time.
- Notice instances in your life where you may be letting time slip away. What comes up? Look from a different point of view and see what is there.
If you are also looking for methods to combine with your mindset shift about time, here are are two that can help:
- Utilize the important/urgent priority system.
- Create a master list to clear your mind and prioritize from there.
What if we all began to consider wasting time just as foolish as burning money?
Enjoy your time, make the most of it, and welcome the possibilities.
Until the next revolution…
Share in the comments below what is coming up for you. What do you notice? How have you shifted your thoughts and actions?
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