Monday, June 10, 2013

It's Time

"Nothing can resist a will that will stake even existence upon its fulfillment."

Benjamin Disraeli

“You will never find time for anything. If you want time you must make it.”

Charles Buxton

Tonight I had some unexpected free time and I anticipate a long day ahead of me tomorrow.  As I was driving home, I thought I could see a movie or go to the bookstore or the comic book store to relax.  Then I remembered my goal of getting 150 blogs written by July 1.
Then this little dialogue began in my head.
A:  Go see a movie.  You should relax.  You might have a long day tomorrow and not get much time to yourself.
B:  But then when would I get my blog done?
A:  Uh….
B:  If tomorrow will be, as you say, a long day, when would I have time to write?
A:  (Silence for a moment and then) You don’t want to burn out writing all those blogs, do you?
B:  No, but I’m not there yet.
A:  But you will be if you don’t take it easy.  You need balance.  You’ll die of a heart attack or something.
B:  I doubt it.  But dying in my Purpose is better than living without Purpose.
A:  Uh….

I drove home while A continued to look for a suitable reply.  For those who are reading this, don’t worry.  I don’t plan on burning myself out or having a heart attack.  But I do plan to write 45 more blogs in the next 20 days.  And I have to write now while my determination is strong.  I also have to write when my determination is weak.  And I have to write when I feel neutral about the whole thing.  My feelings are not the important thing here; my commitment is.
So I don’t mind missing a movie or a trip to the comic book store or the bookstore.  I have plenty of movies, comics and books at home.  I have more than I can watch or read.  What I don’t have a lot of is time.  Oh, yes, perhaps I’ll live another 50 years.  Or perhaps I won’t.  I’ve already missed plenty of opportunities to leave a positive mark on this world.  I’m not saying I haven’t done some good, but I feel like I’ve wasted a lot of time and I can’t get that back.  So I need to use the time I have left whether it’s 20 minutes, 20 days or 20 years.
            When it comes to wasting time, I don’t know which is worse – the time wasted that I will never, ever get back or how bad I feel about myself and the time wasted that I’ll never, ever get back.
When it comes to using my time well, I don’t know which is better – the time well spent or how good I feel about myself for the time well spent (and what I produced in that time).
There’s a dichotomy in my life, as I imagine there is for many people.  I’ve made mistakes and I’ve done some things well.   Some people believe that focusing too much on the mistakes only perpetuates them.  In Now, Discover Your Strengths, Marcus Buckingham says we should spend the majority of our time developing our strengths rather than trying to improve our weaknesses.  So, to that end, rather than worry about my time management issues, I’d prefer to focus on my skills as a writer.
A friend recently said, “The problem with reaching your full potential is knowing what to do next.  Let yourself see that you have reached your full potential, that you are exactly where you are meant to be.”
In Yearnings – Embracing the Sacred Messiness of Life, Irwin Kula states that we are always becoming.  While the two arguments may seem to contradict, they actually complement.  If I were to die tonight, then I can do so knowing I did the best with what I was given.  At the same time, I can allow that there was room for growth.  If I wake up tomorrow, I can work on my strengths.  I can offer my gifts to the world and to my world.
This takes the pressure off trying to write 45 more blogs in 20 days.  At the same time it motivates me to write 45 more blogs in 20 days.
Time is not necessarily short, but it is precious.  And I want to value every moment of it that I’m given.  I don’t want to focus on time I’ve wasted, but on the time I have at this moment to Get Started and to Keep Going.