The simple fact of the matter is time is finite. It will run out. Your one short life will be over. Are you using the talents, gifts, and opportunities given to you?
This idea about the finite nature of time was introduced to me when I was around 13 years old. In our church community there was an old Irish priest with a brogue so heavy I could barely understand what he said.
What I managed to decipher turned out to be his main message, one he repeated often, from the Gospel of Matthew: “You do not know the hour or the day.” And it’s true. It could be tomorrow; it could be when you’re in your 90s.
If you ever lose sight of this, simply open a newspaper, turn on the television, or get on the internet on any given day to see countless stories about people’s “untimely” deaths. It’s a reminder that life is tenuous and precarious, fleeting and precious.
One of the most powerful and obvious conclusions you can draw from this talk about the uncertain end of your time is that you can’t make plans based on when it’s going to run out.
In most cases, you can’t know when that last day will come and then work backwards from there, deciding all of the things you want to get done.
You can only do what you can with what you have in front of you right now.
What would you be doing right now if you knew for a fact that your life would be over in ten years? Five years? One year? Six months?
The trick is to live consciously right now rather than constantly mired in the past or aimlessly daydreaming about the future. It means focusing on the current state of your relationships, work, health, and finances. It means bringing the most to your miraculous life as you can, and hopefully making a positive impact on the lives of others.
Life passes quickly. It’s up to you to harness it, get what you need from it, and give what you owe to it.
Time management, in its essence, is about honoring the spiritual in the Self and finding the true expression of that Self.
There’s little more that’s spiritual than using your time the best way possible.
Unfortunately, the spiritual part is frequently lost as you blame lack of time, other people, and circumstances for your own failure to manage yourself. You bury yourself in fear, pushing away the spiritual and wasting time chasing things that don’t matter.
Remembering this helps deal with the discipline part of time management. You always have the choice to either go after what you want or suffer the pain of hindsight, bludgeoning yourself with “should haves,” “would haves,” and “if onlys.”
And, yes, it can be intimidating and difficult at times. Time management — self-management — is simple to understand, but not easy to do. You must decide and you must act.
Get the Nerve!