We are now on Daylight Savings time. Just about the only thing we’ve been able to save lately is time, but, when you think about it, time may be more valuable than money. Money can, as we have all seen in the Madoff debacle, be swept away by someone else. Money can evaporate in the vagaries of the stock market. But your time is your own, and no one can take it away from you. You can spend it as you please and you own each second. Here are some of the Wild Pair’s thoughts on ways to maximize your time.
1.Your Internal Clock
It is important to know that you have a clock inside of you that is not the same as the one ticking on the wall. You may be a prisoner of the latter, but the former is yours to control. Play with your inner clock. Try getting up an hour later than usual, or spending a morning in bed. Take a walk for one hour and five minutes instead of one hour. When you go on the road, enjoy a lingering meal in a restaurant if you are usually a fast eater. Get used to being master or mistress of your clock.
2. Getting Timely Bargains
Looking to book a flight on Southwest Airlines? If you do it several weeks in advance, the fare can be half of what it is the week before your trip to see the folks. Searching for a cheap vacation? Plan to travel outside of peak season. Instead of sighing about the high cost of travel, make sure time is on your side. Act in a timely fashion to grab the great offers.
3. Time to Look at Currencies
The U.S. dollar is bouncing around like everything else these days, but don’t assume you know its value against foreign currencies. Go to www.xe.com/ucc and check the value of the dollar NOW. What the dollar was worth a year ago may bear no resemblance to its value today. In countries like Hungary, Turkey, Iceland or Argentina, time is definitely on your side: the dollar has 30,40,50 or even 60 per cent more purchase value than it did l2 months ago.
4. Your Time and God’s Time
Whether you are religious or spiritual or decidedly secular, you surely know that you may want something to happen NOW, but it happens in its own time. Instead of fighting this, relax into it. If you are attempting to sell your house, you may bust your chops marketing it, but no one buys. And then, one day, the house is ready to sell, and bingo, a buyer shows up. One way to master time is to step into the big picture: things happen when they are supposed to happen. Accept this. Instead of banging your head against your keyboard when you try to find a date when you can use your air miles to get to Lima, take a deep breath. It may not be today, it may not be tomorrow, but relax and check back with the airline often: a seat will open up for you on American Airlines. You’ll see.
5. Waiting and Acting
Whenever you use the phrase “when I have time,” stop and think about it. You have the time right now. No matter how busy your life is, you can make time for what you want to do. If you are saying to others,”I’ll travel when I have more time,” stop. Make the time. This spring. This summer. This fall. You are in command.
6. Acting in a Timely Fashion
Shakespeare tells us that Hamlet was a procrastinator. He almost drove himself nuts with his inner dialogue. If something need to be done, do it now. If you dread clearing off your desk, decide to undertake the task tomorrow. If a hotel has an offer that is only good for a week, don’t wait until a week and one day. You’ll just kick yourself in your cargo pants. You know the old maxim: don’t put off till tomorrow what needs to be done to day. What doesn’t need to be done today you can put off till tomorrow.
7. Timing the Cycles
You can’t time the stock market. You can’t time the weather. But you can time your time off. If you feel burnout coming on, get away before it happens. An ounce of intervention can prevent a pound of pain. Travel. Change your scene. Do not wait until you are leveled to crawl your way back to happiness.
8. Counting Time
In Guatemala, in the world of Maya ceremonies, there is a man who is the official Counter of Time. Every day, he recites the days and hours of the Maya calendar. He acknowledges the power of the days, the energies that protect that power, and the place of humans in the eternal calendar. He gives thanks, offers candles. You can be the counter of your time. Do a quick scan of your birth, the first day of school, your first love, first car. Think of your wedding, your dad’s 80 birthday party, the surprise party your friends threw for you. Acknowledge each. Give thanks for each. Do it often. Know that your life has and will continue to be marked by special times and memorable occasions.
And now, just smile and have a good time.
Bon voyage and happy seconds, minutes and hours from The Wild Pair.