How To Understand And Utilize Time
Table of Contents
- Understanding Time
- 9 Ways Of Utilizing Time
- Wrapping Up
We talk about how to utilize time but do we have a clear understanding of time?
When I was young, very young, my innocently repeated question was – What is time? Where can we find it?
Nobody could answer it better than my dad. For him, time was much more than just a measure in which events could be recorded and seen.
He told me to look at the sun and its movement across the sky.
His response helped me see beyond the obvious. It opened vast vistas before me.
It gave an impetus to my creative eye. Watching the movement of the sun acquainted me with various hues of the sky, and much more!
He followed my observations closely to help me discover answers to my questions.
Time – the much talked about yet much-neglected word!
It may be very precious for some but useless for others.
When it is broken into moments, it seems to fleet away.
For a child – time is non-existent
For an adolescent – time is fun
For an adult – time is work
For the elderly – time is superfluous
Isn’t it weird how time changes its connotation for each person?
Let’s try to understand it more closely.
“Time is the coin of your life. It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent. Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.” ~ Carl Sandburg
‘Time flows like river’…the most loved poetic analogy describes all the facets of time…the past, present, and future, the speed, the depth, and the eternity.
According to Wikipedia, “Time is a measure in which events can be ordered from the past through the present into the future, and also the measure of durations of events and the intervals between them. Time is often referred to as the fourth dimension, along with the three spatial dimensions.”
That is just a basic understanding of ‘Time’…a curiosity rouser as it unfolds itself slowly, changes its contours while moving with us, sometimes even changes us.
Time is Ineffable
Time is ineffable like that irreplaceable friend who stands by our side, holds our hand and guides us through the tribulations of life, assuring us that we can steer through murkier waters if we have faith in ourselves.
Time is a Friend
Time becomes our friend if we try to understand it. It keeps reminding us that we are all equal at its pedestal.
Time doesn’t discriminate, and offers same minutes and hours to everyone. It leads us to success if we respect its silhouettes.
Time is a Tyrant
Time is a tyrant for those who squander it away, who fail to grab the opportunities it offers, and complain of its paucity.
It fleets away like a petal in the wind, demonstrating its superiority and power.
Time is an Illusion
“Time is an illusion,” said Einstein, as its interpretation changes according to the way we handle it.
We can never cage the precious moments, nor can we erase the painful ones. It converts into a mirage if we get enamored by some aspects of time.
Time is irreplaceable
Time is irreplaceable for an entrepreneur mother who keeps thinking that she will spend some time with her toddler after she finishes the project in hand.
However, she discovers one fine day that precious moments have ticked away, and there is an ever-demanding boy before her who wants her attention all the time.
Time is the finest boss
Time is the finest boss, as shorter the time – greater is our capacity to work.
Given the opportunity to finish a three-hour examination at will, we would never be able to complete it.
A race against time is always won as it endows us with extra energy and competence.
Time is precious – but how to utilize it appropriately?
GOOD READ: The Father Who Had No Time
9 Ways Of Utilizing Time
Making the most of time is plausible.
Multitasking may be considered distracting and inefficient, but it can be very useful from the social point of view.
Friends who hardly get any time together can plan an event together to ‘create more time.’ They can take up a common hobby, chat, cook, eat, and be together for a longer time.
Here are some more ways to utilize time:
1. Make time tracking a habit
Have you ever noticed how time molds our thoughts? We look at the clock and get the signal…time for tea, time for lunch…in other words, time tries to control us.
If we reverse the role, we can accomplish all those dreams, which wait for the right time.
We can keep track of time by keeping a journal of time and noting down all that we want to finish during the day, week, or a month.
2. Know your potential
Time bows before those who have faith in themselves.
The moment we recognize our potential, what is within our reach, what can give us more happiness; it is only a matter of time to look forward to that moment of great achievement.
Look for that moment.
The sooner you discover it, the better it would be for you. Time would just become a tool to convert those moments into reality.
3. Plan your days
All successful men are organized.
A blueprint for the day helps us in staying focused without wasting any time.
Whether you are a student, a lawyer, or an entrepreneur, time management is an essential component of your day.
A lawyer who doesn’t devote enough time to study the nitty-gritty’s of his case before he presents it in the court, a teacher who enters the classroom unprepared, would ruin the day and face disappointments.
4. Eschew distractions
The biggest time-saving device is – FOCUS. Our mind is so supple that it gets distracted by as little as the movement of a tiny insect around us.
A wasp hovering around a windowpane attracts more attention than the painstakingly solved theorem on the smart board of a classroom.
Focus can be enhanced by training our mind, taking a little coffee or tea break, and bursting the bubble that disruptions in work consume more time.
5. Set boundaries for digital devices
The distractions of the modern era are more detrimental to time.
We have got so accustomed to texting and tweeting that we don’t realize how much time goes into these activities.
Once we put our finger on one of those apps of our smart phone, time starts melting at the pleasure of getting connected with the world.
It is better to switch off instant notifications and set time for checking them.
All would depend on how much time you can spare for all those time eating devices. My recommendation is one hour per day, which could be divided into minutes.
6. Balance work and play
Everybody has his/her own definition of play – anything that relaxes your mind and gives you pleasure is play.
There is a time, probably in everybody life, when we don’t care about ‘play’, when we are busy chasing our dreams, and could happily contribute all the hours to accomplish those.
But most experts agree that we can increase our productivity and better utilize time if we devote an equal amount of time to recreational activities, which could be reading a book, doing nothing, watching the clouds or the birds…whatever interests you.
In today’s fast-paced, demanding world, we need to pour more hours into play to earn more out of them.
7. Define your priorities
When there are too many things in hand, we have to learn to prioritize our activities.
When we learn to distinguish between the more important and the less important work, we are at the right track of making the most of our time.
Make a mental list of your priorities and approach one work at a time. Overburdening may lead to disillusionment.
I always tell myself, at this stage of life, my grandchildren need my attention, care, and love, more than any other thing.
There was a time when my students were my priority.
In the race of life and dwindling time, I realized my family needs more of it.
8. Delegate your work
Work becomes endless, if we don’t assign it at the appropriate time to the right people.
You can save a lot of time by telling your assistant manager to conduct some meetings on your behalf and present the minutes of those meetings to you for further discussion.
I am sure you could be having more challenging tasks than those, which could be managed by the team members.
All the time saved could be utilized for starting a new project or finishing the old one in a stress-free atmosphere, comfortably.
9. Set a deadline for your project
We do all those tasks efficiently, within a stipulated time, only when we know we have limited time.
Even a book, which I am reading for pleasure, keeps sitting by my bedside until I tell myself… ‘I must finish it this weekend.’
Time is never enough if we keep procrastinating.
Setting a deadline stimulates our will power and capability of taking the challenge of finishing the project. Even minutes are utilized!
Lord Chesterfield advised his son “to take care of the minutes; for hours will take care of themselves. I am very sure, that many people lose two or three hours every day, by not taking care of the minutes. Never think any portion of time whatsoever too short to be employed; something or other may always be done in it.”
Time is neither good nor bad. It is our mind and our own thoughts that conjure up images of ‘happy times’ and ‘bad times.’
We can enjoy both. Happy moments embrace us in the present, but sad moments keep coming back as memories, which made us wiser and resilient.
Even the future holds a promise in the form of dreams and plans that we envision for ourselves.
Is there something more precious than time? I don’t think so.
So, why not go ahead and implement the tips to utilize time in our life?
If we have time we can take care of our health, money, and relationships (which could be considered equally precious.)
“If you only had 48 hours left to live, would you spend it like you normally spend your weekends? If not, why spend 2/7th of your life wasting your free time? After all, free time isn’t free. Free time is the most expensive time you have, because nobody pays for it but you. But that also makes it the most valuable time you have, as you alone stand to reap the profits from spending it wisely.” ~ Jarod Kintz
Over to you –
I am sure you have a brilliant understanding of time but have you ever pondered over the way you utilize your minuscule moments? Do you organize your time or get controlled by it? You can share your perspective in the comments section to enlighten each one of us. Thank you.
Disclaimer: Though the views expressed are of the author’s own, this article has been checked for its authenticity of information and resource links provided for a better and deeper understanding of the subject matter. However, you're suggested to make your diligent research and consult subject experts to decide what is best for you. If you spot any factual errors, spelling, or grammatical mistakes in the article, please report at [email protected]. Thanks.