What’s the value of time?

There’s all kinds of time.  Personal time.  Work time.  Time to market. What time are we talking about?  For the purpose of this rant, let’s just say all of them.

As I sit here at 37,000 on Delta flight 2055 from DTW to PHX, I find myself lamenting the amount of time I have.  While I’m writing this post, I SHOULD be working on a proposal but I’ve worked all week.  I get up at 5:00 a.m. each morning when I’m on the road and I “work” until 11:30 or sometimes 1:00 a.m. the next morning.

Now before you call me a martyr and before you think I don’t understand that that’s what we all do – stop.  I get it – I’m not unique.  This is not a personal issue, this is a global issue that I rant on this evening – so stand with me brothers and sisters and relish the fact that I speak aloud the things that perhaps you only say secretly.

Time is precious.  We have all heard this saying before.  We all know it to be true.  There’s not enough hours in the day.  I wish I had more time. Time just slipped away.  Where did all the time go?  These are all things we hear and/or say every day.  I had a really nice conversation with an active duty military guy tonight before we took off and I could tell, he was pissed about something.  With all the travel interruptions on the east coast, he’s being trying to make his way home from the Middle East for two days now to see his 12 year old son and all the while, he’s on leave.  This is his time – and it’s being consumed by forces outside his control – frustrating – to say the least.

Here’s my advice about time management.  We all hear the saying, you have to make time.  Well you know, that’s true.  You have to make time.  Time is a precious resource and it just doesn’t lay around waiting for you to wake up one day and go, “OH! Time, there you are.  Let’s hang out.”  No, it marches on inexorably to its inevitable conclusion – whatever that is. 

(Parenthetically, if you would like to open a discourse on the time itself with me, I would be open to that.  You can reach me at www.ernieharris.com where I would be happy to entertain the philosophically implications of time – or not time – but there’s no time for that here.)

There is exactly one step to making time.  Make it.  No excuses, no assistance, no forgiveness. 

Now to be a little more helpful, here’s some things I have developed over the years to assist in the making of time.

  1. It doesn’t matter how much you make, who’s relying on you at work or what’s at stake – you can still make time for your family.
  2. It doesn’t matter how important you are, or how important you think you are or how important you would like to be, what you do with your time is one of the few things you can actually control – so control it.
  3. If you promise to spend time with someone and you break that promise once – shame on you.  If they let you break it twice, shame on them.

I know this is a little darker than usual for my blog but I’ve been on the road for 12 straight weeks and I’m tired.  I miss my wife and I miss my kids and I miss my parents and I miss my bed.  I’m making some time – for all of that.

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