Words & Sports

Time Away: Use It or Lose It

Time. It’s Kind of a Big Deal.

Does it ever seem like you just don’t have enough time?

Maybe you have projects you want to work on, but don’t get to. Maybe you have career goals that need more time than you have to invest. Maybe you’d like to read a book, but you think you don’t have enough time.

I bet you’re wrong. I bet you have the ability to meet your goals.

Think about plane rides, Uber rides, or even sitting in the waiting room at your dentist’s office—what do you do with your time? Do you take advantage of it, or do you just watch the clock and wish the minutes would pass faster? You’d better find a way to use those minutes, because you won’t get them back.

Your phone, while it can be the single greatest time waster, can also be the thing that allows you to take advantage of every minute you have. A phone or a book or a notebook can be with you whenever you find yourself with unavoidable downtime. You might be sitting in the airport, waiting for someone else to show up at a meeting, or sitting on the couch. That’s fine—catch up on your reading or jot down some ideas. Audiobooks and podcasts mean you can catch up on your reading or learning even when you’re driving. Plan ahead and use your time well.

This isn’t to take away from the value of doing nothing. Everyone needs to relax, and part of relaxation is enjoying uncommitted, unstructured time. 

The point isn’t to think about work every second of every minute of every day. The point is to use the time you do have instead of complaining about not having enough or complaining about time that was wasted.

Let’s Get Real For a Minute

I’ve read and listened to so much on productivity. It’s a work in progress. I don’t imagine anyone has it completely figured out. But you do try to create as much productivity as you can—if you want to build something.

While I might sound like I am lecturing in this article, that’s not the case–or at least not my intention. I think about this topic a lot and I write about what I think about. I also write about what I hear people struggling with. Time is one of those topics.

If you ever say, “I’m so busy” or “there are not enough hours in the day” or “I just wasted an hour” or “what a waste of time” then you are like most everyone else including me. And this is for you…find a way to take advantage of the time. Use it. Or lose it.

Wrapping It Up

There are lots of strategies available to free up or make better use of your time. You can hire help, delegate, use your favorite organizing app, carefully prioritize…. But you probably have a lot of time already that you don’t even think about.  

Use your time—or lose it.