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Is Time Management Manageable?

Oct 25, 2007
As I get older, time goes faster. I have to try to manage it or get out of its way.

My first lesson in trying to do this came from my grandmother, who repeatedly stressed the importance of balancing work and play. When I was seven, I thought I'd figured out how. That's when I asked her for another watch so I'd have one for work and one for play.

Today my watch is my conscience. I inherited it from my father and sometimes I think it's still his. My father was always five minutes early. So is his watch - with two exceptions. There have been two crises in my life since I've been wearing his watch and during both crises his watch was exactly right. My husband smiles and says they were coincidences. I, however, believe in...Father Time.

I believe in schedules too. Unfortunately, they're easier to believe in than keep - which is why I love the story about President Carter forgetting his anniversary. Flowers die, candy lives forever on the hips and jewelry doesn't stay hip long enough. Instead of a store-bought gift, President Carter promised Rosalynn he'd never complain when she was late. That's the perfect gift for someone like me who's schedule-challenged.

I schedule everything I can for the morning. I'm most productive before lunch. I want to have all the have-to-do's done so I can take care of the unexpected's in the afternoon. If there aren't any unexpected's, I can take an unexpected nap.

Naps are on the bottom of my daily, to-do list because I make myself prioritize what has to be done in order of importance. Because that usually means doing what I least want to do first, I bribe myself. For me it's the carrot (cake) - not the stick approach to life.

I also try to listen to my body. If I'm tired at eight-thirty at night, I go to bed at eight-thirty. If I stay up late, I try to sleep in the next morning. If I can't sleep in, I try to nap during the day. I've discovered that if I want my body to work for me, I have to be a good boss.

I've also discovered that time can't be managed - it manages us. That's life. All I can do is push the snooze button on my alarm clock and not worry about it for ten minutes.
About the Author
KNIGHT PIERCE HIRST takes humorous looks at life.
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http://knightwatch.typepad.com
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