“The key is not to prioritize what’s on your schedule, but to schedule your priorities.”— Stephen Covey
One of the greatest gifts of getting older is an increasing awareness of the finiteness of our time on the planet. I call it a gift because it’s made me judicious about how I spend my time. I don’t waste it on things that don’t align with my values and allow me to create meaning in lives of others.
Whether we like it or not, the sand grains in the hourglass of our life is sifting down moment by moment. This necessitates the need to ask ourselves two important question on a regular basis: are we making the most of our time here on Earth? Are we living our lives in a way that not only satisfies our desires but also gives us the opportunity to contribute towards improving the lives of our loved ones and our global family?
- How we experience time
- How we organize our time and prioritize
Let’s begin with the concept of how we experience time.
Everyone experiences time differently depending on the quality of their awareness at any given moment. Do you remember your experiences as a child? Do you remember how time stood still and everything seemed to stretch on forever? The reason why children have such strong present moment awareness is because they are totally immersed in it.
When we grow up, this awareness fades away, and we become more distracted by the world around us. We develop a tendency to get stuck in the past or too focused on the future and because of this, we completely miss out on the richness and depth of our experiences.
If we want to get the most out of every moment, we need to slow down and learn to live in the moment. Here are some tips on how to do it:
1- Give your 100% attention to everything you do. Be fully present and make an effort to engage all your senses so that you can take in everything that an experience or person has to offer.
2- Take longer and deeper breaths and practice gratitude.
3- Schedule some alone time that takes you away from the hustle and bustle of your daily life. Use this time to relax, reflect or do the things you love.
4- Keep away from too much media and technology such as smart phones and social media. This not only distract your thoughts but also is a heavy drain on your time.
5- Schedule times during the week when you can “digest experiences” on a deeper level. I like to use these sessions to journal or read spiritual books. This helps me piece things together and appreciate the big picture of my life.
In this way you can “stretch” time and get a lot more out of every moment.
The next step, for getting the most of your time, is to sharpen your time management skills. There are loads of books and programs written about time management so I’m going to boil it down to three main steps:
1- Get clear on what really matters to you by determining your values, life purpose and your goals.
2- Figure out what it will take to get there in terms of resources such as time, money, effort, activities.
3- Balance your time between the activities that take you closer to your goals and other priorities in your life.
This basic 3-step approach towards time management ensures that you’re spending your time doing what really matters to you and serves your highest calling. You stop getting distracted by the things and people who drain you and you begin shifting your focus to what feels right for you.
See your life as one big mosaic. As the artist you get to choose how you want to paint your mosaic using your brush. With carefully planned strokes you have the power to create a masterpiece with beautiful and vivid colors!
All my best on your journey,
Question for you: What is your perception of time? Do you feel that you have a lot of time or do you think it’s too less? What can you do to make the most of your time on Earth?
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