Some people work through one project at a time – from start to finish – then move on to another to maximize their productivity. Others work on multiple tasks by attacking different priorities – setting aside one project in favor of another prior to its completion – until all work is eventually completed in what they feel is the most timely and efficient manner . Still others tend to operate by “putting out fires” as they jump from one critical need to another without taking the time to think about how best to coordinate their efforts, working on one thing UNTIL something seemingly more important needs their attention to fix. We find ourselves worrying needlessly about things outside of our control – wasting precious hours thinking about why something cannot be accomplished (or was not done) rather than taking intentional action to move towards a desired outcome. We feel there is never enough time to finish what must be done (but always have time to redo something that may have been done incorrectly). We spend hours worrying about things outside of our control and getting stressed about finding time to do everything that needs to be done (rather than focusing on doing “something” then moving on one step at a time). Without proper planning and focus we often find ourselves slaves to the very clock we so desperately seek to master – struggling to complete anything (rather than everything).
Far too many complain more about the lemons in their lives – the disturbances, distractions and annoyances – than celebrate the opportunity to make (and enjoy) lemonade. We dwell upon the fact that others possess the attributes we want rather than embracing and exhibiting our individual gifts and abilities. Rather than finding satisfaction in all we have accomplished, we see only what has not been finished due to a lack of time or how much better a job we could have done “if only” more time had been given. Rather than acknowledging how what we did may have positively impacted another we often choose to focus on what was not done (rather than what was done) and how much more should have been accomplished (rather than being happy for what was brought to conclusion).
Everyone can lose themselves in thoughts about what COULD HAVE BEEN. It is easy to dwell on lost opportunity – to excuse a lack of execution by saying that the time for action has passed or something is no longer worth the effort since “things are OK now” (though they COULD be better). It is harder (but much more rewarding) to anticipate WHAT MAY YET BE – to seek issues not yet identified and commit to their being accomplished, accepting each minor accomplishment as but a step on the road towards the fulfillment of a dream. Life is not measured by the time it takes to accomplish our objectives but rather by the objectives we are able to accomplish in the time we have been given – not by how long (or short) a time it takes to do SOMETHING but rather by the impact we are able to make upon the lives of those around us by what we are able to accomplish. We must define objectives and measure accomplishments (rather than overly documenting steps and focusing upon the time it takes to accomplish things) if we wish to invest our limited time wisely.
Perhaps the return on our investment would be much greater if we thought more about opportunities to explore areas not previously identified rather than dwelling upon how content we are to live within our normal routine finding satisfaction in accomplishing our routine objectives. We often find ourselves buried by what must be finished rather than truly celebrating all we have done when se seek closure to the opportunities that require our attention as we move on to those yet to be accomplished.
We should seek fulfilment in life by exploring solutions to unresolved issues rather than making excuses for unintended omissions. We should find peace within the hectic world around us as we take our lives back from the clock that will tick relentlessly (and uncontrollably) on. Time should never become a measurement of how long it takes to fulfill our destiny or the standard with which our identity, success and accomplishments can be measured. Instead, we should identify our accomplishments, measure our abilities and strive for the realization of objectives (rather than focusing upon the path or time it took to get there). Time invested wisely can never be wasted but wasting time worrying about how it may have been inappropriately spent (by yourself OR others) is never a good investment. Choose wisely as we can either master our time (reaping the rewards of our investment) or be mastered by our time (never accomplishing what we wish to do or see what we want to experience) – the choice (of being master or mastered) is up to each of us to make.