What 2020 Has Taught Us About the Value of Time
As the end of 2020 approaches, it seems fitting to reflect on the importance of time, including how you spent the majority of your time this year. Did you spend it on things, thoughts, or people that, in the grand scheme of this thing called life, may not have been worth your time? We will also take a look at how you plan to spend your time in the upcoming year of 2021 – after all, if this year has taught us nothing else, it has taught us the value of time.
At the time of my writing this article, there have been 72.8 million cases worldwide, with 1.62 million of those resulting in death. Currently, the United States has had 16.6 million Covid-19 confirmed cases, not counting yesterday’s 201,000 newly reported confirmed case counts. As of yesterday, there has been a devastating 302,678 lives lost. Sadly, by tomorrow and even the day after, each of these numbers will have increased at an astounding rate.
Indeed, 2020 has taught us to value the time granted to us because tomorrow’s not promised to anyone. Social distancing becoming a mandate has placed a great emphasis on the value of relationships. Abruptly snatched from us was the luxury of attending social events, including gathering with friends and families, resulting in what seemed to be a spotlight, which shined a light on the importance of cherishing those you hold near and dear to your heart. Indeed, 2020 has taught us to appreciate people in general – because they are human, just like you.
It is an understatement to say that 2020 has brought along with it worldwide catastrophes, destruction, and corruption, accompanied by the long-term effects that Covid-19 will have on so many lives for years to come. Thousands of small businesses were forced to close, with many of those closures being permanent ones. Millions have lost their jobs, and families are struggling to put food on the table. Our kids have been affected in ways we could not have imagined.
As a parent, I know all too well and empathize with other parents because I understand how your heart hurts for your kids because all any parent wants is for their children to have a better life than their own. Parents want their children to be happy and healthy. They want their kids to enjoy the journey of life, with an understanding that there will be ups and downs in life. We try our best to prepare our children for the valleys that will sometimes accompany the peaks in life. However, this valley, we never could have imagined our children would have to experience.
Thankfully, there now seems to be an end in sight to this pandemic with a new vaccine being made available. With that being the case, it is crucial to take some time to consider what matters in life. After all, we have been through a lot this year.
This year has been catastrophic, causing millions to lose their job or business. Ironically, it may have created a space for some to start walking down a completely new path in their life. For many, the pandemic has introduced the opportunity to create your path in life. We learned in 2020 that we do not have time to waste, and if you are still wasting time, it is past time to do something different. Life is too short to continue spending time on useless endeavors. Know that you are unique in creation, unlike no other on the entire face of the earth, and created to make a difference. With that statement, it is time to evaluate if what you are spending your time on, or who you are spending time with, is worth your time. After all, time is your most valuable asset; the last thing you should be doing is throwing it away. It is the one thing you can’t get more of, so start making every minute count.
No Time To Waste
Doing what you love means you don’t mind the process even when it gets hard. When there’s a particular task your not fond of, but it is part of the process of that thing you love to do, you do it, not because you enjoy that task, but because you love the process in its entirety; you do it because it brings you fulfillment. You will know what you are doing is worth your time when it both excites and relaxes you. In other words, your thing will fuel you because it is also therapeutic. Take, for instance, the fact that I love blogging; however, there are a lot of “behind the scenes” tasks that I must do to ensure you, my readers, enjoy the experience of visiting my page and reading my content. Many of the tasks I must complete (i.e. making sure all my links are working) are tedious and time-consuming, and I can’t say I get excited when it’s time to buckle down to tackle them, but because I love the process so much, I still get excited knowing that my viewers enjoy the experience of reading my content. I get excited knowing that I am helping someone become a better person. I get excited at just the thought of knowing I have reached only one person. That’s enough to fuel me to keep doing what I do. I am sure it is not a waste of my time because I enjoy it, it is therapeutic, and both the short term struggles and long term rewards are worth it to me.
Time flies when you immerse yourself in a process that you love. And when you don’t love it, time couldn’t go slower. There are simple tell-tell signs that will immediately alert you if what you are doing is worth your time or if what you are doing is a waste of your time. There are times that you may think something is a waste of time if you are not enjoying every second of doing it; however, this is false. If part of the process sucks, but overall you love the process, then it’s worth your time. If you dislike every aspect of what it takes to do the process, you don’t love it. The truth is that it’s possible to dread doing something, but you may have conditioned yourself to tolerate it. If this is the case for you, more than likely, you are doing it because of the following reasons:
- a) You are in a position where you have to do what you have to do until you can do what you want to do.
- b) You have yet to discover that which you should be doing.
- c) You are allowing fear to stop you from doing something different.
Make no mistake about it, despite the reason, you are now [in some form or fashion] wasting your time. Spending time doing something that doesn’t fulfill you leaves you feeling depleted. It is exhausting and, if not addressed, will eventually leave you feeling hopeless and if this sounds like you, know that all hope is not lost.
Here’s what you can do, starting today, to begin to change your situation from one that leaves you feeling hopeless to one that is totally worth your time.
If you find that you relate all too well with wondering if what you spend the majority of your time doing or who you are giving the majority of your time to is worth it, here is a checklist to identify if this is the case:
Remember, there are times that you may not be crazy about every aspect of what you are doing or every characteristic of a person, but if overall, you enjoy the process or the person, don’t make the mistake of not viewing the big picture in its entirety.
- Start paying attention to how you feel overall. Most times, we ignore the signs that something is off or missing due to the conditioning of our minds. This conditioning requires that we accept our current circumstances, even if you are unhappy with the outcome of said circumstance.
- If, over time, you discover that you feel empty, unappreciated, unfulfilled, or that there must be more for you, then know there is. It is time to explore the possibilities that await you.
- Again, stressing the importance of how you feel overall, if you find that you are truly unhappy with your situation, take time to write out what you truly want. When you write down what you want in life or don’t want, it requires weighing the pros and cons and not just walking away from something because you do not feel good about it at the moment.
- Believe that you deserve to live a life of purpose. One that fulfills you and overall brings you joy, not just moments of happiness. There is a difference. Believing you deserve the best applies to both platonic and romantic relationships. If you feel unhappy and depleted behind a relationship more than you feel fulfilled, it may be time to take a closer look and evaluate the relationship.
- Spend some time getting to know who you really are. Become self-aware. Without knowing who you are, but more importantly, who you aren’t, leads to wasting time doing things that do not benefit you in the long run. It also leads to giving time to people who should have never been in your life in the first place.
- Walk in authenticity. Surprisingly, this is easier said than done for many people because we live in a judgmental society. Keep in mind that it is impossible to be authentic without knowing who you are. Hence, this is the reason emphasis is on the importance of self-awareness.
- You must stop caring what people think. Caring about other people’s opinion seem to be the number one reason that holds most people back. Fear of judgment has been the killer of many dreams. Maybe your upbringing has conditioned you to become a chameleon so that you fit into society. You can decide today that you will no longer live your life doing what everyone else is doing. Embrace your greatness by being who you are at your core, and get ready to be amazed at how the world will eventually bend to accept you exactly as you are. And if it doesn’t, you will be okay with that because you will truly feel free and will no longer crave the acceptance of others.
- Begin to take action towards doing what you love. Begin to take the necessary steps to position yourself to engage in healthy relationships that do not drain you. Seek instead to involve yourself in relationships and friendships that push you to become the best version of who you are.
As the quote above states, once you truly understand the value of time, you won’t waste another second of your life. The year 2021 is quickly approaching. Don’t wait until then to start changing your life for the better, but instead, decide that by the time 2021 comes around, you will have already began to position yourself to receive much bigger opportunities that allow you to live a life of purpose. You deserve to win in this life just as must as the next person. Begin by taking note of the steps listed above, and one by one, begin to make the necessary changes in every area of your life, on every level.
Change doesn’t happen overnight, especially if you have subconsciously been doing the same thing, the same way all of your life, but know that it is possible to change your life. Know that you have been gifted with another day to become better and with that knowledge, be more grateful than you have ever been. When you live with an attitude of gratitude, you are more inclined to make the most of the time you have. As we all know from this past year, time waits for no one, and it certainly isn’t guaranteed. Decide today that you will not waste another second of life on things that aren’t worth your time anymore.
As always, I would love to hear your thoughts. Please feel free to share them in the comments below.
Sherre Webb Life Coaching is here to help you live a purpose-filled life, free from judgement and fear. If you would like to schedule a one on one coaching session, click below to schedule your appointment.