“Master Your Time and Master Your Life”
The inspiration for this title comes from Alan Lakein, a prolific author on time management. The full quote is:
“Time = Life, Therefore, waste your time and waste your life, or master your time and master your life.”
Who wants to waste their life? I surely don’t! I’m keenly aware that I only have 24 hours in a day and yet I complain that time passes too slowly when I’m doing something unpleasant. I in turn marvel how fast time has passed when looking into the past. This slowing down and speeding up of time is fascinating. Maybe Einstein was on to something! Can I travel in that fourth dimension of
Spacetime? Am I bending the passage of time? Of course not, it’s constant and steady. As The Rolling Stones sang “time waits for no one and it won’t wait for me”. So what is going on? Let me put it another way. Have you ever caught yourself doing something and not realize time’s passing? That experience is what I call “Time Travel of the Mind”. You “traveled” through time at a speed of your choosing. Most of that time was spent doing something you really enjoy. That begs the question, can I master this time travel of the mind? Yes you can! Do more of what you love.
I’m nearing 40 and my son will enter middle school this fall. I shake my head and mutter things like, “Where has the time gone? I need to slow down time! Am I spending my time on what really matters?” I shouldn’t need to wonder or regret, but I do. I need to focus on mastering time in the present. This sounds too simplistic, but that’s the beauty of this concept. If I just stop and focus on how I will spend this next minute, this hour, or this day then I believe time will be mastered. I know there are actual time constraints. I have to get the kids to school before 8am, I have to work and I must live within those constraints, but what I’m trying to convey is a mindset change. You can master time with your mind. Mind control! Time travel of the mind.
I value my time and I guard it jealously. It’s more precious than gold. It’s not a renewable resource, it’s rare and limited, and it’s all mine. Mine, all mine! My kids might disagree, especially Saturday morning, but I choose whom to share it with and how to spend it. I’m compensated for it and I also give it away for free. I cherish my time with my wife. Those times need to increase and time spent on things that don’t pay dividends need to decrease. My family is the most important shareholder of my time. I want to spend more time doing things that matter. Spending time to produce positive returns. Become a successful Entrepreneur of Time. Work becomes meaningful.
So why am I writing this? Is this time spent writing (or your reading of this) going to accomplish something worthwhile? My three readers might enjoy this and maybe that’s enough. It could be that I needed to write this down out of guilt for not mastering my time. I need to ask this more often, “what is the best use of my time, right now?”
Yeats poetically puts it: “Oh let not time deceive you; you cannot conquer time.”
Do you think time is unmasterable, untameable, and unconquerable? There has been so much written about time management and so many experts to take your money (and time) who will teach you how to manage your time. With all of this expertise and knowledge why do we still struggle with achieving control? How can we master time when we cannot control it? Is mastery synonymous with control? Yes and no. I concede that I cannot control time, much like I cannot control the wind, but I strongly believe I can master it. Just as Vasco de Gama could master the wind to sail around the world and discover new lands. Let us master what little time we are given and embark on this adventure called life.
Master your time, master your life!
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