Friday, December 31, 2010

The Gift of Time

In 2011, I'm going to guard and protect my time as if it were a living being in need of my ninja skills. #learntosayNO

The other day, I declared the above goal on Twitter.  I hope I can succeed.  Of all of my personal goals for the New Year, this is the one that matters most.

Time.  It is far more fragile and precious than we treat it. 

I challenge you all to think about time this year. How you use it.  Why you waste it.  If you squeeze every last drop out of it.  If you wish it away. 

I promise you, if you do the latter, you’ll ultimately wish you had it back.

Respect your time.  Make other people respect your time.  Demand that.  Do it for yourself.  Do it for your family.  Do it for your sanity. 

I am now declaring publicly that I will protect my time as if my life depended on it.  While I’d love to read all your scripts and manuscripts, write projects for you and with you, promote your work, read every blog post, watch every short film, and spend hours helping all of you, I simply can’t. 

In 2010, I accomplished more than I ever could have dreamed.  I squeezed every second out of a day… and then some.  But in doing so, I reached a breaking point that threatened to push me over the edge of sanity.  I gave too much of myself without nurturing myself in return.  I can’t do that for another year.  It will kill me.  Most importantly, I missed far too many moments with my teenage children, who are growing faster than I care to admit. 

Will I continue to be your Twitter Pimp Angel?  HELL, YES!   But I will now ask myself each time a request comes my way, “If I say yes, will I resent it later… will it distract too much from my own goals… will it take too much time away from my family?”  I urge you to ask yourself those same questions when your time is on the line. 

I have no doubt I am at an impasse in my career.  I am right there.  So close I can taste it.  I need to grab that brass ring, and to do that, I need time to continue to prepare myself, and my writing, for when the ring flies by on the carousel of this insane ride.  I need to be ready for the opportunity. 

I need time to do that.  I deserve to give myself that gift.  My children deserve it.

Are you using your time to its fullest?  More importantly, are you really nurturing yourself enough?  How do you juggle family and career?  Do you feel balanced?

I’d love to know how you all manage your time.  I could definitely use some advice. 

I wish for you a glorious year of love, success, happiness… and the time to enjoy it. 

Happy New Year! 

7 comments:

  1. Note: Jamie Livingston and Zac Sanford recommended I read the book The Power of Less. It's on my list of positive things to spend my time doing.
    Join me!
    http://www.bookendbabes.com/2010/12/27/the-power-of-less/

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  2. Amen to everything. Lamentably, I find that when I do have the "time," I tend to waste it on trivial things. Procrastination? Yes.

    So for the new year, I make a promise to myself that I will take the gift of time when presented to me and use it as stepping stones to my goals and dreams.

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  3. Marisa, I work really well under pressure. I think a lot of people who procrastinate do. One trick I've learned this year is when I find myself procrastinating too much, I set a timer for 30 minutes and work as hard as I can in that time. Often, I can get things done that would have taken me 2 hours!

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  4. Lord knows I can't help with time management itself--I think there are too many personality types to give global advice--but I think it pays to be self-aware. Can you recognize when you feel overwhelmed soon enough to pull back without damage? I look at the yesses and noes and take the temperature of what do I think is easy, fun, hard, needed--and then be gentle about doing those hard things, right now when I'm busy and unrewarded for the effort.

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  5. I've been thinking about time lately too. In fact, using my time in a productive manner is one of my biggest resolutions this year =D. Wishing you all the best! Good luck! :)

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  6. Sometimes I feel paralyzed with how much I need to do. I have noticed that if I 'do' rather than focus on the fear of doing a lot more gets done. Here's hoping we both keep our sanity and accomplish all of our goals. Happy New Year! Thank you for commenting on my blog, that meant a lot to me.

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  7. No, Jeanne, I am not using my time to its fullest, but I am a happy writer. Perhaps I am naive to believe time well spent with another is more important than getting the "to-dos" off my list. It's always about priorities. Perhaps I may have more to say after I sit in this mud puddle.

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