You have always heard that to be productive and successful you must be good at managing your time. I don’t buy it. In fact, as far as I am concerned, that is a bold face lie. How the heck can you manage time? Time is intangible. It marches on second by second, year after year. Unless you have some supernatural power I am unfamiliar with, there is not a thing you can do about it.
Let’s look at a few other misnomers as well. How often have you failed to do something and used the lame excuse “I didn’t’ have time”. Yes you did. You had plenty of time; you just chose to spend it doing something else. I have a friend who has struggled financially his entire life. I have tried to help him a few times by coaching him on some specific things he can do to get ahead but he always comes back with the same old dried up excuse “I don’t have time”. He does have time to visit his girlfriend, watch television, go to a ball game, drink a beer, smoke a cigarette….you get the idea.
Or how about “She has more time than I do”? We all have the same amount of time. But we all spend it doing different things and funneling our activities in the direction of our own priorities.
That is my point. Forget learning to manage time and start learning to manage yourself within the constraints of time. Bill Gates does not have one millisecond more time in his entire year than you do; he just chooses to spend it more wisely. Life is about choices and all of the choices you have made up to this point in time have landed you right where you are today. You have either managed yourself well or you have not, time is completely innocent.
Look for things in your life that are stealing your time. My wife and I agreed to get rid or our television set a little over 10 years ago. Once we finally made it through our withdrawals (proof we were addicted), it was amazing how much time opened up for other, more productive, activities.
For example, if you will spend 30 minutes a day in some form of self-improvement activity, at the end of the year you will have invested over 22 eight-hour days in yourself. How can you do that and not find yourself in a better state financially, emotionally or physically? But most people will never do it because they are “too busy and just don’t have time”.
So, turn your back on the misconceptions of time management and start managing yourself. Look for the time-stealers in your life and kill them off (activities….not people). You will be amazed what you can accomplish in a year.