Time is an elusive little bugger.
When you’re young and healthy, the concept of time is so irrelevant, you drown in the wealth of it and are free to squander it like a millionaire. For those a little more seasoned in life, the concept of supply and demand takes on new meaning. There are whole industries out there catering to those in this category – from skin care, to health food, to cosmetic surgery. All with the intent to turn back the hands of time or at least stop it from ticking on our clocks.
I know people in both these areas of life. Teens who live on the edge of trouble as they have too much time on their hands and not enough healthy outlets for all their passion. I also know many frail and elderly dolling out their minutes with a great amount of care. Most of us probably live somewhere in between.
At some point in our life though we all become keenly aware of our mortality, and the concept of how to spend our remaining days rises to the top of our thoughts.
They say that if you want to do something well, start with the end in mind. Here are few ideas I have considered that might help:
1. Looking back at the end of your life what items do you hope will be on your done list? Spending some of that valuable time now deciding what those things are is the essential step to fulfillment.
2. Write it down. It’s true that you remember much more just by getting it from your brain onto paper. Besides, it somehow makes it more real. More official. Now you have to work on it.
3. Consider your obstacles. This is where I often stop. I don’t often see a way over, around or through them so I go no further. But God. Don’t leave Him out of the equation. Pray about those things that are hindering you. Just because you don’t see the solution, doesn’t mean there isn’t one. I also think it’s just plain good to speak your heart to the Lord.
4. Think of steps. If the obstacle was removed, what path would you take to achieve that goal? Make them concrete items, both big things and small ones.
5. What things are on that list that you can do now? Even if they are small items, they are forward motion. I once stopped a diet because I was only losing one pound a week. After 5 weeks off, I gained 5 pounds back. So in essence, I was 10 pounds away from where I could have been. Don’t be discouraged by small steps, they add up.
Lastly, it seems to me that if we want to use our days wisely that we need to take care of ourselves. In every area – mentally, physically and spiritually.
We live in stressful days and depression is more prevalent than ever before. Life is overwhelming and we often try to go it alone. Especially when we’re discouraged. Mentally we can be easy prey to believing lies. Seek friends that will encourage you to walk in the healthy truth.
Technology is certainly not going away. As a matter of fact, I would shutter to think how much time we spend on one electronic device or another these days. Since we don’t have to even get up from our chair for work or entertainment that leads to physical lethargy. We need to move. We weren’t designed for such a sedentary lifestyle and it will take a toll on our health.
I have found that nothing brings me more balance and joy than good spiritual health. Not in a religion but a love affair with the God of the Universe. After all, He made me. He is the One I most desire to please.
As Psalm 31 says, ultimately, “my time is in His hands.”