You may delay, but time will not. – Benjamin Franklin
What does that mean?
This quote is about the unrelenting nature of time. It just keeps coming and coming and coming. That’s just the nature of time. It flows on, it keeps going. Whether you like it or not, here it comes. Again. More.
We can, and often do, delay in our lives. However, as the quote says, time doesn’t delay. This quote is reminding us that time is a-ticking. What we fail to do now, will not be done. What time we waste is gone forever. What time we let slip through our hands will never be recovered.
That’s not to say that a little rest and relaxation every now and then is uncalled for. It just means that we should be prudent when we do delay, and make sure we account for the impact it will have in how our lives play out, and what we are not getting done while relaxing.
Why is drive or intensity important?
If you have ever spent some time in a raft or a canoe, slowly moving down a river or creek, you know how relaxing it can be. At least until the next set of rapids. Some people chose to live their lives that way, with no real plan, and no real urgency.
While that may be their choice, most of the people I know who are like that don’t get much done, and only a very few of them contribute much to others or to society. I’m not talking people who have no talents, but people who lack focus, lack drive, and lack intensity.
Without a sense of the value of time, it’s easy to let it slip by. But if you value your time, you are far more likely to have a significant amount of drive or intensity. This urgency to get things done is what often separates those who get things done, and those who simply watch it happen.
If you wish to get something done, it is going to take some urgency, inspired by the value of your time. This drive, this intensity, is what will get you from where you are to where you want to be. Michael Jordan didn’t think about maybe getting good at basketball, he had drive. What do you have?
Where can I apply this in my life?
This can be applied where-ever you let time slip by. I’m not talking about a planned vacation, or a stress-relieving ten minute day-dream. I’m talking about the all day, lay on the couch because I don’t want to do yard-work. That is when this quote is most applicable.
That’s what’s fun about writing this column. Last weekend, I didn’t do the yard-work I was supposed to do. Instead, I made sure I did it this weekend, as soon as I got up on Saturday. It didn’t take but a few hours, and then I had time available to relax later in the day.
Where in your life do you tend to find excuses for a delay? Is there something you especially don’t like doing? Perhaps it’s laundry day, which can always be delayed another day or two? Or loading the dishwasher, or even worse, washing the dishes by hand. We aren’t out of spoons yet, so…
That’s not going to get the job done, is it? To me, this is the kind of delay that Ben is talking about in the quote. The things you put off, that don’t get done, and the time you waste in their place. These examples are trivial chores, but what are the big things in your life that are being delayed?
It might be a big project that you haven’t yet started. It might be something quick, but consequential you are afraid to do, for fear of failing. It could be a medical test you are avoiding because it sounds nasty or because you are afraid of what it might reveal.
It could be any number of other things as well. The point is that time is speeding by while you are ignoring, avoiding, delaying, or otherwise not doing what you could, and should, be doing. The question of importance is what are you losing by this delay?
You are losing valuable time, in the case of the project. For the quick, but consequential action, be it asking for a raise or asking someone out, you may well miss the best opportunity you ever had. For the medical test, even if it comes back with good news, think of all the stress you put yourself through by delaying. And if it comes back with bad news, you’ve lost that time for treatment, right?
Now, how do we find some drive or intensity, and use it to overcome our tendency to delay? One way is to weigh in with the cost of not taking action. When the pain of losing out is greater than the fear of trying, you’ll get up and get busy, right?
Another way is to simply use self-discipline. Take it in small chunks, but take steps. Save for something expensive, a little each week. Start walking or lifting milk jugs or soda bottles full of water if you can’t justify the price of a gym membership, or want to get an early start.
I’m sure you can come up with other ideas, and please feel free to share them in the comments section below. Now comes the real painful question: How are you doing on your New Year’s Resolutions? How many have been delayed more than a little?
There is no time like the present. Don’t let time slip by without doing a little something towards your goals each day.
From: Twitter, @iheartquotes
confirmed at : http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/b/benjaminfr101831.html
Photo by Cea.