Happy Thursday, Daily Feelers!! Today I’m talking “time”. As this year whizzes by, I keep thinking about how and why we have become so fixated with this little man-made phenomenon. I know, this one may take a minute or two to read…so if you are low on time, may want to table this one for when you have a solid 15 min to dive in. 

Have you ever stopped and asked yourself what do you value most? Your things? People? Something you can touch? Well, I asked myself this question recently and the first thought that came to mind was this may take a minute to write down. And BAM…time struck me again. Before I could even say an answer, I had already given one. Time.

It’s the one thing we can’t make more of and the thing we miss the most about the past…

Remember that “time” we went to the park for a late afternoon picnic and stayed until sunset?! 

What I wouldn’t do for just one more long talk with my godfather…

Why did I spend so much time plotting for that promotion? If I had known, I’d have just done the bare minimum and moved on. 

No matter how we swing it, looking back on time can be a nostalgic moment or a regretful one, but one thing is sure…that time spent can’t be recreated or duplicated. 

This got me thinking…how obsessed am I with time? Well, sadly, in one day…I referenced “time” over 203 times…make that 204 while researching for this article. 204!!! I didn’t believe it so I did it again a few days later….175. It was a light day at work, yet…time was still a part of every aspect of my days. 

Gotta be there by 8am…

Will take 1hr to get groceries…

And on…

And on…

Every part of my life seemed to fit on a wall clock. My calendar is always filled to the brim with activities, deadlines, and expectations. I realized I spend my entire life in a rat wheel of time spent mostly for others. Don’t get me wrong, I did this to myself. I’ve been an overachiever for my entire life. But it wasn’t until I sat down and asked “why”, did I finally see that I was the only one responsible for giving away all my time. 

So, as any good overachiever does, I made a list of what I wanted to spend my time on vs. the things currently costing me my minutes. I had spent the last 365 days getting divorced, dating again, staying employed, keeping the kids educated during a pandemic. I felt it might be time to take a birds-eye view of my life and see if I’d kept time on my side or had I wasted it on mundane gains. 

My list made me cry. Turns out, I’ve been pretty busy recently and time management is still something I can pride myself in. Somehow, someway, it’s all gotten handled. All the goals, the changes, the plans…the friends I miss…even in the chaotic dust storm of Covid…I exhaled and realized I’m on it. All of it. But how? 

My godfather always told me “if you care about it, you’ll fix it”.  He was so right. I made a choice in July 2020 that sent me flying into the future with blinders on and a list in my pocket. When I hit the ground, I didn’t complain about the bruises from the fall, I just saw that list. I didn’t go in order. I didn’t try to get it all done in a day. I just kept going. One new task…check. That task led to 5 more to-dos being added, but I brought it. Now that list is just as long as it was that first day I landed on shifting sands, but the reason it no longer felt like a burden vs progress was because I only put things on my list that I truly wanted to work on. That was new for me. Being my first priority…being able to say “no, I can’t” and mean it. I used to think I was selfish if I had anything on my list that was solely for me. Now, I got it. If nothing on that list is for me, who am I living for? And how can I truly inspire others to break toxic cycles if I am still pretending I enjoyed my rat wheel? 

This brought me back to the original reason I wanted to write this blog…the holidays are coming. For me, that means Family Time!!! No lists. No major overhauls on life…just some time well spent making memories with people who need no introduction. I can’t wait. Now, family is funny. A few years ago, I lost 9 family members back to back. For 2 years after that, the holidays were a sad and lonely time. I barely spoke to friends and family. I didn’t decorate. I just existed. It was awful. So, after therapy and some life changes…I’ve rid the funk and realized that while I can’t get more time with those that are gone…I’ve still got a ton of love to give those that are still here. That’s exactly what I plan on doing. 

One thing about time, man created it. It’s not actually a tangible commodity. It’s a placeholder, a marker of achievement, and maybe even a deadline builder. No matter how you see it, just know its value can only be added by you. You choose how and when time gets allocated to your plan.  The best moments of my life were all created when I stopped worrying about where the event fell on my timeline and focused solely on finding growth and beauty in the journey. Now that I know time really is on my side, I plan on using every second of it working on my bucket lists and nothing else. Time is of the essence, after all. 

Little music therapy for anyone else struggling with “time” today….

JB Boutelle has worked in “The Biz” for almost a decade, yet she’s somehow managed to keep her feet firmly on the ground. Her altruistic spirit aims to evoke your Inner Phoenix and encourage readers to take the difficult leaps in life, so you can continue to grow.

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