Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Time-Suck Monster

I've been thinking a lot lately about the way I use my time. Time is a precious gift and we only get one shot at it. Once time has past we can never get it back. There are days that I wish life was like tivo and I could rewind, fast-forward, and even pause it. However, for VERY good reasons I was not involved in the planning committee on how time would be governed in this life. Life is and always will be in constant play mode, our job is to make the most of every second and not need any of the other buttons.

I spent last week evaluating my time. I didn't change anything in my normal routines. I simply went about my days the way I typically do, only I carried a timer with me. Whenever I engaged in a particular activity I started the timer and when I was done I stopped it and recorded the amount of time that had gone by. After a week I looked over how I had spent my time during the week. I was pretty disappointed in myself when I saw the results. The majority of my time was spent mouse-clicking through the internet. Runner-up went to watching movies and T.V. Next on the list was sleeping...I like sleep! Then there was time with friends and family. Glancing over the numbers it didn't take a rocket science to figure out my life was out of balance.

I was pretty shocked to see how much time I actually spent doing certain things. The timer experiment really opened my eyes to how easily time can slip away from us if we are not careful. I know some days I would sit down at the computer and say that I was just going to take a second to update my facebook status and check my email and that would be it...hours later I was prying my fingers off the mouse and dragging myself away from the computer. Some nights I tell myself I'm just going to play a quick game of solitaire before bed and then find myself falling asleep on the keyboard. I decided that the internet has a hidden monster inside of it...kind of like the one in the dryer that is always eating up my is a time-suck monster! You sit down with good intentions to not spend much time, but before you even realize it the sun is setting behind you and your left wondering what happened to the day. I'm sure other things have time-suck monsters in them as well but for me personally the internet holds the most vicious one.

In order to try and fight off this ugly monster I have been working harder to create a balance in my schedule. I am still carrying around my timer but this time I am setting it for the amount of time I will allow myself to indulge in a certain activity like watching tv or playing around on the internet. Once the timer goes off I force myself to walk away from the status updates and do something different...something more productive. I still fall prey to the time-suck monster now and then (I think sometimes he reaches through the screen and resets my timer!) however, I feel as though I have done much better at being proactive this week. I shall continue on my quest to completely destroy the time-suck monster, but for now I feel slightly victorious. I think I may go celebrate my victory with a banana split. :0)

March Madness Update: I am currently reading The Screwtape Letters by C.S. Lewis which is my 4th book so far this month!

P.S. Good news for the day...It was sunny and warm! Yay for Spring!

2 comments: said...

What a great test! I may just have to do this! THanks for sharing!

Lisa said...

I really like this post, although I would be nervous about doing the same thing... work work work and not much time spent doing things that would be beneficial to my growth. I think maybe I'll work on that before I try the experiment.

P.S. I'm just starting to read "Eat, Pray, Love" I'll let you know how it turns out!

P.S.S. Enjoy the banana splits for me... ;)