Precious Time

This week I would like to break down the 24 hour day period, and how and why it has a profound affect on what we do with the time available. I am not writing this to depress people….but I do believe the more we know, reflect, and understand what we do with our lives, the better we will be able to make the changes necessary to improve our quality of life.
This is how it goes:

1) We start out with the basic 24 hours.
2) Deduct from that 8 hours (if you’re lucky) for sleeping
3) Further deduct an extra eight hours for work (9-5), plus 2 hours travel time.
4) Also deduct 1 hour each morning for shower, breakfast, etc.
5) At the end of the day, deduct 1 hour for dinner and cleaning up.

How many hours of personal time for yourself does that leave you with? 4 hours per day.
What I haven’t factored in here is extra time that is needed for maintaining a relationship, caring for children and/or taking care of pets.
These, to me, are conservative estimates. Some would say 4 hours….. are you kidding? But I’m trying to base this on the average.

6) Add to the 4 personal hours per day of the workweek, which is 5 days, Saturday……let’s give ourselves an extra 4 hours, and Sunday, 4 more to that….which brings us to a grand total for the week of 28 personal hours for the week. That’s a grand total of a little more than 1 day a week for things to do for ourselves.

7) It is up to each individual, where need be, to deduct more time for issues such as housecleaning, paying bills, health concerns, car repairs, etc., etc. Each total for each person is unique.

This is the way it is. I know, I didn’t make it this way either…but if I choose to bury my head in the sand, nothing will ever change. It’s not hard to understand how easily we can get overwhelmed with life. So, for that ballpark figure of 28 hours a week of personal time, what we put into it really matters.

Once we get over the shock, what do we do?? We start writing down everything that makes us happy, on paper. We develop a plan to schedule each thing that we want to do for ourselves into those hours. We control those hours. How many more times do we have to hear how “fast” life goes? Once we look at our lives, there are no mysteries.

Each one of us has to ask ourselves, what do we want from our lives? How can we make a difference? Hey, we can pretend that there is an endless supply of time, but deep inside we know there isn’t. So this weekend, if you haven’t already begun, ask yourself, “What do I want from my life?”… Not just for your children, spouse, or friends……but for you.

Time is precious,

Jennifer Avalon
© 2000 Jennifer Avalon

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