Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Why Time Is Not Your Enemy

Time is fair and balanced.  We all get the same amount of it every day.  I hear people say, "I wish I had more time," or "I didn't have enough time to (fill in the blank)."  Time is not the problem or the enemy.  The real culprit is the person you see when you look in the mirror.  One of my greatest challenges is overcoming procrastination.  Somehow, the pressure of a deadline inspires me.  The closer I get to the end of the rope, the greater the thrill.   Here's an example:

I won a trip to Maui just before I proposed over 25 years ago.  My future wife carefully planned her outfits and started packing as soon as I asked her to join me.  I waited until the last minute.  Something came up at work and I got delayed.  I rushed in at the last moment and hurriedly stuffed my swim suit, tee-shirts and sandals in my duffel bag.  When my love wasn't looking, I hid her engagement ring inside my bag and zipped it up.  I couldn't find a lock to secure the bag and the clock was ticking.  We barely made it to our flight.  When the plane landed, the duffel bag was missing.  I couldn't say anything to the attendant when I reported my bag missing because I didn't want to spoil the surprise.

The bag showed up a day later and they delivered it to the hotel room.  I breathed a sigh of relief when I grabbed the ring out of my bag.  The story had a happy ending.  She said yes.  Fast forward twenty-five years.  I'm still confronting an old adversary.  No, it's not time – it's time management.  The best lesson I learned over the years is that setting up priority lists and focusing on the most important task at hand enables me to reduce stress in my life and get things done.  I'm not going to wait until the last minute to plan our 25th anniversary celebration this summer.  And I certainly won't wait until the last minute to pack my bags.  When the weather outside is hovering around 0º it's really easy to be working on my duffel bag complete with a swim suit, tee-shirts, sandals.  I will be accompanied by one lovely lady sporting her twenty-five year old wedding ring.

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