Do you feel time poor?
I just started reading an article that describes us ‘as a society of time-poor individuals’. This is nonsense for many reasons. There is no such thing as time, there is simply one big Now in which everything arises and decays. We live in one big moment. In this moment we do things, we keep busy!
The illusion of time arises due to us observing change. We live in an overloaded world, full of information, events, things we think we should and must do. This creates the impression that we are time poor, but we are simply putting too much stuff’ into the basket. Add the fact that we tend not to be present then we experience an endless onslaught of events and commitments; there’s no reprieve.
But do you know what? You are actually not time poor. You can just sit there, go to work when the time comes, cook yourself some food, go to bed and then do it all over again.
So what is it that makes us feel that we are ‘time poor’? – It is our mind!
My grandparents who had four daughters, very little money, and no help, had to grow as much food as they could. They also had to wash, clean, sew and cook everything from scratch. They could be seen as time poor and yet they did not experience life as that.
It is our endless desire to do everything and fear of missing out that makes us feel as though we are time poor.
Time management is self-management, and much of this is attention management.
What do you pay attention to? The changing colours of the leaves on the trees or that dinner must be cooked, homework must be completed , and you want to listen to a podcast, watch a program on TV, finish a piece of work and clean the floors as well? This focus on ‘busyness’ creates a sense of being time poor. The real issue is about how we manage our life, what we make important and what we priorities.
The Now just is, it is what you fill it with, what you pay attention to, that gives you the sense of whether you are time poor or not. You are in charge of that, no one else. The endless desire to fill the Now is like a ‘life greed’, we want as much as possible and we want it all NOW!
The less we are mindful of the Now, the unfolding within the moment, sounds, smells, what is seen and what stirs our hearts, the more we are going to want to fill this starved soul with ‘stuff’. Irrespective of how much we get done or how much we experience, we will still feel starved. Just as we can’t fill an empty stomach by watching a good film, we cannot fill our yearning for emotional and spiritual fulfillment with information, events, shopping or completed to-do lists.
We have to claim time for ourselves. Be curious around what nourishes your soul and your heart and what makes you feel that you land in the present. Don’t wait for everything to be ticked off or completed because this never happens. You are not time poor, you are starved of what you yearn for.