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Current of Life by Viriginia Kravitz

Time is On Your Side

Time: Friend or Foe?

Our perception of time changes constantly. It's running out. It's dragging. We've got too much time on our hands or not enough hours in the day. We want someone or something to just hurry up so that we can move along. We want time to slow down so that we can finally catch up. Whatever our ambivalence toward time, we always seem to want more of it.

We can mark it, manage, organize, and allocate it but we can't completely control it. Is time a friend or foe?

What Does It Mean to Own Your Time?

Many of you who've known me a while are familiar with what I call owning your time. Certainly, part of this is looking at how you organize, plan, and make decisions. While I don't believe in a one-size-fits-all system, having some kind of organizational system that you can rely on gives you the right balance of structure and flexibility. And there are many proven time-management techniques that are useful and worth adding to your routine. Yet there are two other things that are even more central to owning your time: accountability and attitude.

Accountability is realizing you have choices. You have the ability to say yes or no, to be proactive when possible and to respond appropriately to things outside your control. Accountability is realizing your job isn't to do it all, nor is it to declare your efforts futile; it's to select well and choose what is worthy of your time.

Now let's look at Attitude. If you believe there are not enough hours in the day, each day is a race against the clock. If you believe each day holds precisely enough time for that which is most important for you to make progress on or pay attention to, it's a very different experience. This is what I've come to believe. Of course there are plenty of days I don't feel as if there's enough time, yet believing there is enough changes my outlook. "Not enough" would mean the cards are stacked against me and in that case, why bother? "More than enough" means it is possible to choose wisely and be satisfied with my efforts. I'll go with that one.

Your Ally

How would it change your days if you thought of time as an ally? Entertain the possibility that each day holds enough time for exactly what is yours to manage, face, make progress on, learn from, enjoy, be grateful for, or otherwise deal with.

This Week's Call To Action:

  • Think of time as on your side and make decisions from there.

  • Treat time as your ally. Each day, take a few minutes to plan. Decide what is worth your time and create a strategy to focus on those items.

  • If you determine that you also need some organizational tools to stay on top of things, make a plan to acquire those.¹

"I neither fight time nor surrender to time.
We are allies as I move through life."²
-Julia Cameron

See you in the current,
Ginny Kravitz's signature

¹For an idea of what's included in an organizational system, take a look at the right column of this menu.

²Julia Cameron, Heart Steps: Prayers and Declarations for a Creative Life, (New York, NY, Jeremy P. Tarcher/Putnam, (c)1997), page 71.

²See also: There ARE Enough Hours in the Day. For related articles, visit the Current of Life library; sort by category and scroll down to: Focus as well as Time, Planning.

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photo of Ginny Kravitz Current of Life, by Virginia Kravitz, is a free, biweekly ezine for accomplished professionals who want to have more fulfilling careers and lives. Each issue provides practical guidance and inspiration to embrace a new and joyful momentum as you navigate the important decisions of your life. As a subscriber, you have exclusive access to special events such as teleclasses, call-in days, program previews, and Current Conversations, a monthly community call.

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