What do you do with the 24 hours you are given every day?
Once, there was a businessman who was sitting by the beach in a small Brazilian village.
As he sat, he saw a Brazilian fisherman rowing a small boat towards the shore having caught quite a few big fish.
The businessman was impressed and asked the fisherman, “How long does it take you to catch so many fish?”
The fisherman replied, “Oh, just a short while.”
“Then why don’t you stay longer at sea and catch even more?” The businessman was astonished.
“This is enough to feed my whole family,” the fisherman said.
The businessman then asked, “So, what do you do for the rest of the day?”
The fisherman replied, “Well, I usually wake up early in the morning, go out to sea and catch a few fish, then go back and play with my kids. In the afternoon, I take a nap with my wife, and the evening comes, I join my buddies in the village for a drink — we play the guitar, sing and dance throughout the night.”
The businessman suggested the fisherman.
“I am a PhD in business management. I could help you to become a more successful person. From now on, you should spend more time at sea and try to catch as many fish as possible. When you have saved enough money, you could buy a bigger boat and catch even more fish. Soon you will be able to afford to buy more boats, set up your own company, your production plant for canned food and your distribution network. By then, you will have moved out of this village and to Sao Paulo, where you can set up HQ to manage your other branches.”
The fisherman continues, “And after that?”
The businessman laughs heartily, “After that, you can live like a king in your own house, and when the time is right, you can go public and float your shares in the Stock Exchange, and you will be rich.”
The fisherman asks, “And after that?”
The businessman says, “After that, you can finally retire, you can move to a house by the fishing village, wake up early in the morning, catch a few fish, then return home to play with kids, have a nice afternoon nap with your wife, and when evening comes, you can join your buddies for a drink, play the guitar, sing and dance throughout the night!”
The fisherman was puzzled, “Isn’t that what I am doing now?”
Time is the most valuable resource given to all mankind in the same measure. The one thing that is common among Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, Mukesh Ambani, Warren Buffett and You is time! No matter where you are in the world, you have 86400 seconds, 1440 and 24hours, but what we choose and/or how we choose to spend our time makes a big difference.
What do you spend the better part of your day doing?
Many people are more concerned with how they spend their money but not how they spend their time. We have adopted the old saying that time equals money, but in actuality, time is even much more valuable than money. Take, for instance, it is possible to get back a thousand naira note you lost yesterday, but you cannot bring back the time you spent yesterday.
We need to understand that time needs value. If you don’t value your limited time, you will do anything to pass the time. You can make more progress in the same amount of time if you perceive it differently.
I recently activated the screen time on my phone and realised that I spent over 8hours on my phone daily. Given the nature of my job, it is not out of the ordinary that I’d spend more time on my phone than a banker, but realizing that out of these 8 hours, I spent 6hours on my social media hit me for six!
I didn’t have a business on Instagram, I am not an influencer. I am not a public figure in fact I have Zero posts on my social media accounts yet I spent the most time there. The truth, I had thought I only spent 5 minutes on there, which is the truth. But, those 5minutes I spent in and out of Instagram when summed is a whole 8 hours. It is ridiculous! And, I bet very relatable too.
Now to the big question. How do you utilize your TIME?
The very first thing you need to start doing to be able to manage your time better is to create a schedule that will help you organize your work. Different people might give it different names, but one thing that can help you get started is a simple To-Do List.
Line your tasks according to their level of urgency and importance and treat them as such.
Another thing you can try doing is setting a time limit for each task you need to accomplish throughout every day. As they say, a goal is a dream with a deadline.
While this will add more pressure on your shoulders since you will have a very strict daily schedule to follow, you might come to find this process a lot easier and effective in the long run.
You also need to reduce your distractions. My distraction was social media and I have set a limit for how long I want to spend each day checking other peoples lives on Instagram. Yours could be unnecessary chit-chat with friends or hangouts. Changing your habits takes time and effort, but will help you manage your time more effectively
Lastly, create a growth environment. Surround yourself with people and things you can learn from, and an environment that nurtures you instead of distracts you, and you’ll be more likely to grow.
I have seen people who are always busy but busy doing nothing. You must have heard that busyness does not mean progress.
It’s a good time to ask yourself, “ what am I really busy doing”?
How often do we understand that we could use our time better, and regret that we didn’t spend it wisely? How often do we dream of how good it would be to amend things we did or didn’t do long ago? The older we get, the longer and thicker are the shadows of the past, and what’s important here is not holding on to them. We cannot turn the clock back, but we can do our best today to make tomorrow a happier time.
Time is free, but it’s priceless. You can’t own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep it, but you can spend it. Once you’ve lost it you can never get it back.” – Harvey Mackay