Very rarely do I remember things said to me verbatim. Sometimes I will hear something I find valuable, twist it into words and a context I feel comfortable with and toss it in the back of my database at which point it never comes out intact again, but rather as a minor influence as part of a much larger thought process. Over time, it will be completely forgotten and lost from my processor completely. Then someday I will hear the exact same message, only in different words, and grasp onto it again, in a slightly different form, until that thought too is once again forgotten until the next time. It’s an endless cycle of information recycling that continues endlessly with most things.
Every once in a while though, I hear something that just makes sense and I draw from on a monthly, weekly or even daily basis. Years ago I heard something that fits these criteria and has stuck with me and never leaves my conscious thought. What I heard was simple and underwhelming but made complete sense to me at the time, and still does today. It was; “You have time to do whatever you think is important.”
What this says to me is that we do the things we find most important first, and save the more inconsequential tasks for later, or, perhaps never. So the next time someone says to you; “Hey I saw that you called a couple weeks ago, I have been so busy I haven’t gotten a chance to call you back!”…..really? Outside of Harrison Ford through the first half of Regarding Henry or Tom Hanks in Castaway; I can’t think of any such person that would be unable to spare five minutes in a two week stretch. The fact of the matter is that you are a low priority to this person, and calling you back is pretty far down their priority totem pole.
With every new day we face, we have a list of priorities in which we want to get done; the reality is that there is time for everything that must be done, and no time for things that aren’t important to us. When was the last time you heard someone say…”you know, this lung cancer is really bothering me, I just don’t have time to go to the doctor, ya know, with work and the kids and all.” That’s just ridiculous. The things we do aren’t dictated by the time we have, but rather the priorities we set. You have time to do whatever you want to do, guaranteed. If you don’t do something, ask yourself how important it really is to you. Right now, I am in the middle of writing an article that will most likely change the world and alter the way humanity thinks, however, I certainly have time to take a nap, if I wanted to, but currently I find this more important, barely.
So what are your priorities? So often you hear people say they are too busy to go to the gym, myself included. But what is that but an excuse to put off doing something that isn’t really all that important to you. Next time you find yourself telling someone, I didn’t have time to work out or I didn’t have time to prepare my meals, think about the truth in that and say it like it is; “I wanted to go to the gym, but not as much as I wanted to go out to eat with friends. While I realize that exercise will better me physically and mentally and would ultimately yeild a greater long term benefit and better my life, I decided that the short term happiness gained by blowing it off and engaging in a social activity would be easier and more fun; so was therefore the superior option for me.” That would be the truth. Just remember that there is always time to do what you need to do!