Friday, September 23, 2016

Just Five Minutes

I am forever losing five minutes.

When I plan my schedule so I can arrive on-time, usually I run about five minutes late. This doesn't work well when your business depends on meeting people in a timely fashion.

The doctor's office, hair stylist, and teacher don't appreciate it much either.

Too often than I care to admit, I am apologizing for being just a "little late."  I try to blame it on traffic lights, or a last-minute phone call.  But the truth was I didn't plan well.

Where do those pesky five minutes disappear to?
It's such a mystery. Or is it?

You see, I like to think I have most everything I do timed.  I know how long it takes to get ready.  My GPS has my trip planned out to the exact minute, figuring in traffic.  No excuse there.  Was it the last minute search for the keys, the water bottle filled last-minute, the extra time spent to have a good hair day?  Too much time surfing the web, checking one more status?

I guess it's probably a mixture of these and a few other things combined.
It doesn't really matter why I run late.  What matters is that I finally build the five minutes into my schedule.  A five minute buffer.  Well, while we're at it, let's just make it ten.

What would happen if I planned better and arrived five minutes early, not just once, but every time?  What would happen to my stress level?  It's not difficult to imagine. I would be a much nicer driver.  Might even take the time to smile at a stranger along the way and say hi.  I could sing in the car instead of white-knuckling the steering wheel.

Wow, five minutes early to everything!  What a refreshing thought!  Often I blame my stress level on having too much required of me, too much to do and not enough time to do it.

Is the problem really not having enough time?  Or is it spending the time unwisely.

I recently read an article about extremely successful people, a list of fourteen ways they think and act differently than the rest of us.  What jumped out at me was that they measure their days in minutes, not half-hour or hour increments. And they schedule those minutes on a calendar that they guide their day with.  Secondly, they valued time over money.  Money, they said, could be lost and gained back. But time, once gone was lost forever.

Is that it?  Is that the big secret that highly successful people have over us regular folks?  How they view time? How they don't waste it?

Because that's something most of us could attain as well.  If we valued each minute instead of squandering them away in five-minute blocks here and there, how would our lives change?

The Bible teaches us to number our days, because it is the one gift we have that can only be spent once.

Now, where did I put my keys?