How we view time in a world changed and fixated on the COVID-19 pandemic has changed drastically. But the changes haven’ been the same for everyone. Here is part of the email I sent to a group of leaders last week. (Sign up to join that list here.)
Time has been on my mind all week. When I decided to write about it today, I couldn’t decide what song title to use as a subject line.
Because some people, during the current situation are self-quarantined and might be thinking about time like Styx – thinking they have Too Much Time on My Hands
Others, who might be in law-enforcement, medical professions, or feverishly trying to move people to a work-from-home scenario, might feel more like Carly Simon and are thinking I Haven’t Got Time for the Pain.
I must admit that last week, after the NCAA basketball tournaments were cancelled, I planned to write about how much more time I would have, since I wouldn’t be watching basketball for three weeks. Now, no one is even thinking about that.
That’s why I went with Bob Dylan – The Time’s They are a Changin’ which is certainly true for all of us.
So here are my thoughts on time now – whether you are in the Styx or the Carly Simon group.
If You Have Plenty of Time
Spend more time …
- In conversation or making memories with those you are quarantined with (if you are) – looking at photo albums, playing board games, or doing puzzles for example.
- On Facetime, Zoom, or the phone with loved ones if you aren’t with them – staying connected and hopefully laughing at least a little bit.
- Working on your hobbies – or learning a new one (when would there be a better time?)
- Learning in general, or at least reading. After all, one of the reasons you’ve given yourself in the past for not doing these things is lack of time, right?
Spend less time …
- On Social media – unless you are really connecting with others and you leave feeling better, shut it down!
- Watching/reading the news – 10 minutes three times a day will give you all you really need anyway.
- Binge-watching. Some might be good, but with the other options above, you could stop after fewer episodes, right?
If Time is Tight
Personally, I am in this group. If time right now feels fleeting, make sure you are taking a breath. If you are running hard to help your team as they are dealing with so much change, do what you must to have time for them, and not just deal with the business issues and challenges.
- Get some rest.
- Eat right.
- Drink lots of fluids.
- And of course, keep washing your hands.
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Times are changin’, and the changes aren’t over. We can all be more productive, happier and healthier and benefit our ourselves and those around us if we be more intentional, and maybe listen to a bit more music.