Thursday, January 1, 2015

Classic Corner: Time Bandits

 By Shannon Burgess

I planned to write about being good stewards of our time and while waiting for my computer to update, I found myself engrossed in an episode of Real Housewives of Atlanta. By the time my laptop rebooted for the final time, I discovered my brain had become a blue screen. I was blank. The eloquent thoughts in my head had been replaced with mental commentary on this one’s hairstyle and that one’s handbag. I despise these shows and yet, like a train wreck, I couldn't turn away. The episode went off and I found myself watching the next episode, eagerly awaiting the upcoming drama I’d seen on the previews.

The television had become a time bandit and a distraction from my big picture. So much of our creativity is lost while watching, reading and posting about the creativity of others.  Despite the drama, these women are accomplished and even the weakest link on the show is being paid just for being on the show (Not a bad gig). I made nothing in the 2.5 that I watched and am convinced that I lost a few brain cells.

We spend so much time in other people’s business that we fail to get some business of our own. How many hours did you spend playing Candy Crush? Okay, you aren't on that wave, but what wave are you surfing? Twitter? Instagram?  Fantasy football? Dr. Oz?  Scandal? I’m a proud Gladiator  too, but we have to recognize that Olivia Pope is a character played by Kerry Washington – an actress. She’s working and we’re watching.  She’s living a dream and most of us are just surviving, barely making it. It’s easy to forget, but that new movie has a producer. That scandalous novel has an author and that sold-out game has players, all profiting from our incessant distraction.

When I was young, I’d get engrossed in some silly show and slack off on my homework. My mom would snap, “They already finished 8th grade!” She was right. The movie, video or web page that has you so distracted will be there tomorrow, but today’s opportunity may not. How many years have you put off that business venture? How many months have you skipped the gym? How many weeks have you gone without nurturing your important relationships? How many days have you wasted your time? We claim to lack time, but in fact we simply lack the discipline to prioritize. You can want money like this one, a body like that one and a relationship like them. We always want, but WANT without work is like "BING" without "O" – just another four letter word with no prizes.  As we seek to pursue our goals in the coming year, let’s remain mindful of the time bandits. Time is our most valuable and ever dwindling asset. Unlike money, you can never “make” more so time so choose to spend it wisely.

1 comment:

  1. Nice post. "They already finished 8th grade!" Lol, I love that. Replace 8th grade with any goal, and that phrase can still be a motivator. I agree we need to be more judicious with our time, but I think that includes down time. You wanna veg--out? Cool. Give yourself an hour--a weekend, if you need it--but after that, back to work! Personally, I can't really enjoy my breaks if i don't feel like I've really earned them. --OM