LifeWorkClockTime is moving on.  The clock is ticking.  To these familiar themes, you could add that age old phrase: Time is of the essence.

Time.  You only have so much of it.  Can you get more of it on your side?  If not, how can you at least use time wisely – to accomplish your main goals in business and in life?

Webster’s defines time as: the measured or measurable period during which an action, process, or condition exists or continues; a nonspatial continuum that is measured in terms of events which succeed one another from past through present to future.”

A friend shared with me his idea of our perception of time as it relates to our lives.  When a person is, let’s say, four years old, a year seems like a long, long time.  It equates to a fourth of a 4-year-old’s entire life!  However, to that same person, at age 40, a year seems noticeably shorter.  It is only 1/40th of their life!

Time has been called our most valuable resource.  It is absolutely finite. You get 24 hours in a day, no more, and a limited number of years in which to live.  Given that time is finite, it seems we should make the most of the time we are given.  So how can we make the most of our time as it relates to business?

  • Make the most of your time at work.  Give yourself to your work.  Be on time – or early – and do your very best with the time you’re given.  Arrive at work rested.  Accomplish the most that you can early in the day.  Making the most of the first part of your day sets the tone for a productive remainder of the day.  Enjoy talking with your co-workers - and remember that everything should point to meeting your company’s goals.  In fact, enjoyable talk during the day can lead to increased productivity.  It can help you relax, feel connected and be more a part of the team – which can help you work much more effectively.
  • Stay focused on the end result.  When you graduate from college, you might find a job that pays less than what you would prefer.  As you move up the ranks in your company, remember that the clock is ticking.  You may really enjoy your work and be immersed in it.  At this stage of life, you may be tempted to think that the significance you derive from your work, your importance to your company and your daily productivity will never end.  Remember, however, that there is an end-point, so you want to accomplish what is important – even essential – in the time you have.  Remember, too, that time is moving quickly. If you have children, you will witness this before your very eyes. Keep that in mind as you raise your kids.
  • As in business, as in life – find your purpose.  Since time flies, focusing on your lifetime goals daily will help you achieve them in the end.  Without focus, our lives can be random.  Integrate your work as part of your lifetime goals, knowing that one day, you won’t be working in your job.  It will come to an end, no matter how well you do.  Bill Gates is no longer the CEO of Microsoft.  Barbara Walters is no longer reporting the news.  What do you want to accomplish in life?  Or as one person put it: What will you give your life to?  When you can come up with what you really want to accomplish in life, you can pour your efforts into that.  Things that don’t fit into that paradigm can be dropped off.  Things that are at the center of your goals can be given significantly more time and attention.

With a purpose, you can give yourself to your job and enjoy the early years, the middle years and the later years.  Your job can be a big part of what you accomplish overall in life.  You give your time and talent, your passion, to your work and accomplish valuable things.  And in your off hours, use the same time management principles to accomplish your life goals – through helping your family, through your place of worship, your hobbies, chores, etc.

Between work and the other parts of your life, your use of time is focused, intentional and goal-based.  Before your time elapses, you probably will have carried out your life purpose and will have enjoyed vitality in every day!

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