Time is something that is considered precious. We tend to hear things like:
• “We want our time to matter”
• “Good things take time”
• “Time is non-refundable, use it with intention”
• “Time is precious, spend it wisely”
• “You’ll never ‘find’ time for anything. If you want time, you must make it.”
A story that always influenced me was that of John Grisham, a lawyer turned author.
“When he first started writing, Grisham designed a challenging daily ritual. Awakening to his alarm at 5:00am sharp, he would hustle through a shower and to his office five minutes away. He required himself to be at his desk, with his coffee and legal pad, writing his first words by 5:30am. Frequently needing to be in court or client meetings before 9:00am, Grisham knew these quiet hours were critical to finishing his book.”
He spent three hours every day or 15 hours per week, Monday through Friday, literally changing his life and trajectory. At this point, some of us may look at this and think, I do not have that kind of time. Research would tell us different. Nicholas Carr is his book The Shallows discusses that, “According to an extensive 2009 study conducted by Ball State University’s Center for Media Design, most Americans, no matter what their age, spend at least eight and half hours a day looking at a television, a computer monitor, or the screen of their mobile phone. Frequently, they use two or even all three of their devices simultaneously.” Perhaps we have the time, but struggle how to adjust our lives to find time?
I would offer you a different perspective…Instead of looking at the amount of time, think about the life and person you want to become and FIND TIME accordingly. You are your own barrier between you and that person you want to me. Rory Vaden said it the best, “You multiply your time by giving yourself the emotional permission to spend time on things today that will give your more time tomorrow.”
How to begin:
1. Identify the person you want to become or the goal (i.e. someone who has more time with family, author, lawyer)
2. Eliminate: What activities can you eliminate that do not add value to your overall well- being?
3. Replace those activities with ones that you feel will add value to your life. Put them on your calendar. Start small, one day a week.
Here is the key to it I’ll find the time….no matter what. We think if it can’t be perfect then it isn’t worth it. It’s a skewed way of thinking. James Clear in his book Atomic Habits, describes it wonderfully, “ You don’t realize how valuable it is to just show up on your bad days. Lost days hurt more than successful days help you. If you start with $100, then a 50 percent gain will take you to $150. But you only need a 33 percent loss to take you back to $100. In other words, avoiding a 33 percent loss is just as valuable as achieving a 50 percent gain. Again, as Charlie Munger said, “The first rule of compounding: “Never interrupt it unnecessarily.’”
At the end of the day, “It’s not about having time. It’s about making time.”