August 27, 2013

Say “No” to Wasting Time: Create Time that Matters to You.


Photo: John Mallon

“Yesterday is gone. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have only today. Let us begin.”

~ Mother Teresa

How often do we think to ourselves and hear from others over and over again, “I would do ______________ (fill in the blank) IF I only had the time.”

I am going to make this brief, so that you can get on with what really matters to you. I’ve got some questions that I’d like you to think about.

Does it feel like you’re always sacrificing something that you do care about for something that you do not care as much about?

Are you spending enough connecting time with your kids, spouse, and family?

Are you putting yourself on the back burner frequently to tend to other obligations and responsibilities?

Do you have any idea about how you really feel about your past and current experiences?

Are you neglecting to make time to communicate with people who are important to you?

I could go on and on about all the important experiences that we miss out on, in order to tend to something else in our lives.

Consciously or unconsciously, we are always making choices about what matters, how to spend the next 15 minutes of our day, what to do this weekend and where to let our thoughts gravitate.

Collectively, and of course, at the individual level, because that is where it all starts, anyway, we’ve got to decide to stop wasting time on things that do not feed us, change us, or bring positivity into our lives. The constant distractions of all things technological and the drama around us are creating apathy in our youth, exhaustion in adults, and conflict in relationships.

I am not saying technology is bad, but I am saying too much of it helps to destroy passion, production, and connection.

I think that we can all agree that time feels as though it is speeding up, and that can partly be due to the constant distractions that we have become so accustomed to. Irregardless of the reason, It feels like we barely begin the school year only to realize that it’s already the holidays or, better yet, springtime.

We often put off what we value most, telling ourselves that “someday” we’ll get to it. Only to have “someday” never come.

What do you think this way of thinking does for our our mental, emotional, and physical states? This thought process keeps us in the “wanting” state and the “someday” state, and neither one of those states ever actually happens.

Taking the steps to make something happen that feeds us in the present moment (not putting it off) tells the brain that “someday” now longer matters, and that “today” is the day. With this practice, we begin to establish new habits toward creating the time we want. Habits that will allow ourselves to cultivate the time that truly matters.

With constant stimulation and distraction, the brain becomes hardwired for more, searching for the next stimulation. We’ve got to be smarter than this. Take control of this kind of process, and actively take time into our own hands.

In cultivating time that matters, we must sprinkle in those experiences that fill us up and that matter most. Like, our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health. Our relationships. Sustaining a quality of life that energizes us. Our passions. Creating what we care about.

We all know what chronic stress does to us, right? It leads to obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, autoimmune diseases and lots more. Do what you can do to steer clear of these illnesses by reconnecting with your passions, even if it’s for a few minutes each day.

Some ideas for filling yourself up might be:

Take a quiet walk in nature

Have a date night with your spouse or partner

Have fun and “play” with your children

Connect with your teenager by doing something that is important to him or her

Meet and catch up with a positive supportive friend

Take a yoga class

A 30-minute read of a good book

Artwork of any kind, including writing

Physical workout of any kind

Experimenting with a new “clean” recipe

Volunteer for a cause you care about


Learning something new that is interesting to you

Remember, we get really good at what we practice. Practice creating time that matters.

Signing off—so you can get to it.

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Ed: Bryonie Wise

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