The Importance of Time in American Life
Our time is important. It is a precious commodity. We schedule its use on a daily basis, and that schedule can get quite hectic. It’s like a linear cadence of how our daily lives are spent.
Mostly, our time is spent around the central events of the day, rated according to importance. Or should I say, rated according to the importance we give to them. For most of us the main event for today is,… (drum roll)…. going to work. But that’s not the only event that consumes our time.
There can be many necessary tasks that surround the main event of the day. There are things to do on the way to work, on the way home from work and after we get home. Actually many people feel that work is the only thing they have time for. They’ll say “I go to work, I eat, I sleep and I do it all over tomorrow”
But in truth, it’s amazing how many chores can be squeezed out of so little time. Just ask a single parent. For that matter, ask a caregiver, or a teacher. Heck let’s admit it, we’ve all looked for ways to “squeeze a little more time” out of another day.
We like to think that we can:
- Manage time – to get the most out of it.
- Schedule time – to place a sense of priory on each event.
- Make time – if anyone ever truly invents a way to “make” time, please contact me. I want to invest in your idea.
- Save time – change the way we do something in order not to waste time.
- Kill time – something teens do instead of what their supposed to be doing.
- Find time – for the things we wish we could do.
Don’t you wish we could get some time, pack it in an old shoe box and hide it in the closet? We could then bring it out when we really need it. Sadly that’s not the case. We can’t store time to use later as needed.
But I can tell you something we all do. We always have time for the things that are important to us.
Therefore, how we spend our time is somewhat of an indicator of our path of life. That cadence of time records a history of our daily choices. In a way, how we spend our time says something about who we are and what we believe.
At this time (pun intended) I would like to make a suggestion. This personal effort will improve your life and the life of others.
Use your time as a gift.
Be a companion with a shut-in, lonely or sick person. Help a single parent with their kid’s holidays. Reach out to the impoverished or provide help at a soup kitchen. Spend some “quite time” doing nothing more than holding hands with the person you love.
Sometimes it’s much easier for us to just donate a few dollars or give some old clothes or furniture to the local outreach center. And there’s nothing wrong with that, it’s good and right to do so. But when you give some of your time to another, what you’re really giving is yourself. And that’s much harder to give. You’ll have to make/schedule/find a way to prioritize that time you intend to give. It’s an act of selflessness.
You are the most important and precious gift that anyone can receive. And they know it. Best of all, when you give of yourself in this way, you will receive just as much in return and it will be more precious to you that the time you gave.
That’s the very essence of charity.
It’s time well spent.