There once was a music storyteller named Jim Croce. He sang about saving time in a bottle so that he could spend eternity with his “you”. He told of how there never seems to be enough time to do the things that you want to do once you find them.
In this hurry-scurry life, we rush and try to do more things in the same amount of time that our grandparents did less, so we think. That is an illusion. There has never been enough time to love and be happy. We think we must have more, do more, achieve more, but at what cost?
Long dark nights lend themselves to sadness and loneliness. We see days and sunshine as happiness. Why is that?
We fool ourselves into the lie that we are productive and efficient. We have calendars that sync everywhere on all the time-saving devices. We have alarms and reminders to keep us in the right place at the right time. Our shopping is brought to the door so we can save time not walking the isles and shopping malls of our youth. We are entertained on demand instead of waiting for the new season releases in the fall. We are in control. We are connected. We have the same twenty-four hours a day to do things, yet we are exhausted. Make sense to you? Shouldn’t we be well rested with all the time we save?
Here’s some cold hard reality for you. We are still time-poor.
Every convenience that saves you time in one place costs time or peace someplace else in your life. The cost of multitasking in this high tech modern lifestyle is internal peace and happiness.
and yet….we can’t stop.
The need to have that constant connection and that feeling of acceptance is a drug. In our deluded state, we believe we are doing just fine. We can disconnect any time we want.
Try it….in a matter of minutes, you start reaching mindlessly for that screen. Your thoughts wander from the task in your hand to wondering what is going on in the world of social media. Don’t worry, I am not judging you. I am right there with you.
We waste all our time and money trying to look like diamonds to the outside world through posting filtered images, but it will not change what is on the inside. We are as a society, more isolated, withdrawn into ourselves, and lonely than we have ever been.
When was the last time you focused on a person in real life? Listen to their breathing? Look into their face as they spoke? Felt their hand on yours? Really heard what they meant behind and between the words that they spoke?
Let’s put the time back in a bottle and pour it out when it matters, not on time thieves like social media and games. Let’s stop using all the time savers and use what is only necessary for life, like stoves and washing machines.
Let’s open that box of wishes and share them with the people in our lives. Take that vacation, eat that decadent cake, take that risk, and forget to take the pictures to post on social media.
Let’s take the counted hours that we spend virtually talking to faceless people and spend it with the faces in front of us.
Let’s remember what it feels like to reach for a hand across a table, recall the smell of a shoulder as you lean on it and the solidness of a person’s presence.
Set the do not disturb to silence notifications on your device but set the alarm an hour early every day, you know that alarms will ring through DND right? No, I am not going to tell you how to start your day so that you will be more productive or get more things done. I am not going to tell you how to save time.
Use that hour to simply be with the person you love. Hold them and tell them how important they are to you.
Saving time is easy when you put the minutes of your life in perspective. Save time not to use later, use it now on what is important.