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Our time is not our own……but it can be

by The Happy Rock on May 3, 2007

Time for the second law : Unmanaged Time Comes under the Influence of the Dominant People in my World

Intuitive, you bet! If I don’t have a plan for my time, then every phone call, email, meeting request, and lunch date can take time away from the tasks I truly desire to accomplish. For example, if my best time for accomplishing work is the early morning, then I should schedule that time for myself. When your my good friend calls the night before and asks if I want to go to breakfast, I can confidently respond with “I already have something in that time slot, but I would love to grab a bite at lunch”. Effectively, since my time was already budgeted, I can make conscious decisions about the priories i want set for my time. Without that time blocked off I may have accepted the invite and totally enjoyed myself, only to realize that it took me 4-5 hours that afternoon to do what I could have done in 2.

It also helps to remember that the word dominant here doesn’t have to be a negative term. It refers to anyone who has a valid claim on our time: parents, children, spouse, co-workers, friends, etc. Not budgeting our own time can often lead to undue resentment towards these dominant people in our lives. We unjustly view them as keeping us from our goals. In reality it is my own problem, since I should be in charge of my time. Ultimately, the desire shouldn’t be cut people off and live a self-centered life, but we should be willing to consciously submit our time, even our best time, to those people that are important to us. Budgeting your time will hopefully allow us to serve them better by making us more discerning, productive, efficient, and happy.

– The Happy Rock

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Double Eagle May 4, 2007 at 1:47 pm

Great post. I find that it’s tough to make decisions regarding my own time sometimes, because I want to be there for people who need me whether it’s family, friends, or co-workers. What’s not as intuitive about what you said is that by making these decisions to maximize our own productivity, we actually end up with MORE time to devote to the things that are important to us. It’s not easy to say no to someone, but to maximize our productivity and better meet our own goals, we need to learn how.

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