Time & 2014
As we near the end of another year I thought it prudent to talk about time.
We humans take time for granted, “there is always tomorrow,” “I can’t wait for Friday,” Why is this day going so slow?” Sound familiar?
When we are working for someone we are “selling our time.” One man said once that “we are all whores,” “We will do most anything for money!”
That statement was not lost on me and he was right! While the traditional whore sells her time and body we sell our talents and time. There is little difference except her talents are not acceptable in polite society; while ours might be.
Simply stated, we have no idea when the bell will toll. We have no idea when we will draw our last breath or have that final heart beat. Will we live to the ripe old age of 100 plus or will we kick off today?
Some of us take this to the extreme and create a bucket list. Before we kick the proverbial bucket we want to accomplish X, Y and Z and probably many more letters than there are in the alphabet.
So, as we prepare for 2015 what should we be thinking about? What should we do?
Sadly I have known way too many folks that never did things that they wanted to do. Simple things like go to Alaska or Hawaii. These folks had the means, they just did not set aside the time.
Time management is something that should be taught in school as I truly think that is a key element to success. If you set aside 8 hours of every day for sleep, that leaves you 16 for other things. 40 hours of every week should be for work that leaves you 40 for other things. Realistically we can take 10 of those 40 for commuting leaving 30 for eating, playing or other things. That of course does not include the 32 hours on the weekends.
For arguments sake, let’s say we will live until the age of 80, give or take.
Taking care of your body and mind should be a priority. Getting to 80 would only be good if you can still do things at 80. Many folks still live a productive active life at that age and instead of shunning the idea you should embrace it and plan for it.
Life is about change, and adapting to that change. As we age we find that there are things that we can no longer do or do easily.
After my head on collision with the drunk, my life took a turn that was unexpected. There are things that I can no longer do as the pain regulates that activity. Should I relegate myself to that fact and just stop trying, or should I look for other things that I can still do?
Successful people don’t give up. They keep trying. They look for other ways to re-invent themselves. Wounded Warriors are people that I look up to. While I live in constant pain, I still have my extremities and even though it hurts, I can still use them. Many of them do not have them any longer and yet, they find new ways to “live life!”
The death of Robyn Williams took me by surprise. That has been a very sad event in 2014. I wish I had known him because maybe, just maybe I could have made a difference. That to me is one great way to “spend” ones time and that is in the service of others. I am not suggesting that you make a career out of it but, I always feel better when I am helping someone else. Robyn was a life worth investing in. He made countless people laugh and have better days through his talents. His death made many cry and I suspect; still does.
The longer you live the more “death” you will experience and it is important that you deal with it in such a way that it does not bring you down. None of us are getting out of this alive and that brings me back to time management.
One of the other “celebrities” that meant a lot to me was Steve Irwin. Please don’t get me wrong, there are tons of people who have meant something to me that I have genuine pain for their loss, Bing Crosby, John Wayne, Bob Ross, Ronald Reagan, and Carl Sagan to name a scant few. The list could go on all day so let me get back to Steve Irwin.
Why Steve? Steve made me laugh. Steve captured my interests and in doing so made me see his love of life and all of the world’s creatures in a new light. Before Steve, the only good snake was a dead snake, the same held true for spiders! Now I have been known to take a spider out of the house and put it back outside. I actually chased a coral snake down and took its picture! I can guarantee before Steve, that is not something that I would have done! While chasing the snake I remember thinking in his voice, “I hope its not grumpy!”
Although his zeal for life often put him over the top of the bell curve of “living on the edge,” He lived his life more in his 42 years then most of us will in those 80 years that we may have. Steve brought the camera in and shared many moments of his life “some rather intement” involving he and Terry’s first child being born. I was amazed that he lived past that day! That show, had me put a visit to down under, on my bucket list.
Living in the moment
There was a star trek movie where Picard was taught to “live in the moment.” What were the writers getting at? I thought about that for sometime and finally concluded that we fail to take time to smell the roses. We see them in passing but seldom stop and go over to them and “smell them.”
We go through our lives one Starbucks at a time, punctuated by meetings, phone calls and long commutes to and from the office where we once again survive hectic schedules of soccer, ballet, ball practice, dentist visits, and maybe a trip to grandmother’s house for the holidays.
We live our lives on screens. We exchanged the TV for the computer, and now we have tablets that can be utilized during the commercials for things that you simply must have as you disserve them! We stalk our friends and family through Facebook or other social media and we get our news from snippets doled out in 140 characters or less.
We allow the masses to let us know what is important by what is trending, often times to discover it has something to do with someone’s butt!
When I visit family in other parts of the country I look forward to the visits where the internet does not work and the cell phone gets crappy signals. I have been known to get some coffee and watch the sunrise on their porch and I have also been known to sit on the porch with a good book if no one was around or, engage in “social intercourse” with those that made the time to do so.
Those are moments where I either invested in myself or in others through a just about lost art of “talking.” Carrying on a conversation without LOL or OMG and in more than 140 characters!
Set yourself some short term goals and long term goals whether it be financial or life goals and track your progress.
Much like project managers track the progress of a project through milestones, task and such, you too should manage your life in such a way that by the time you retire you have the funding to do so, and you have a plan for what you will do during that time of your life. Both are equally important!
Some will tell you that life just happens but, those are folks analogous to ships at sea, without a rudder!
You must have a rudder if you don’t want to capsize or end up on the rocks!
Manage your money and manage your time!
If you are called home before you get to retirement, than God has something more important for you to do.
While you are working, try to enjoy what you are doing. A third of your life you spend working, you should do your best to find something to do that you are passionate about.
A third of your life you spend sleeping, get a comfortable bed as this is an investment in you.
The commute is just what it is and your options may be different. Car pools allow you the opportunity to visit with others. Public transportation would allow you to nap or read and then there are books on tape.. I have been known to use it as “me time” and sing while other drivers looked on, thinking that I had lost it!
Make the most out of the time that you have here and spend your time wisely!
As Marvin Zindler used to say, Good Golf, Good tennis or whatever makes you happy!
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