Dr. Philip E. Humbert publishes a web site called: The innovative Professional’s Letter. And in a particular issue he talks about time. Listen to what he has to say.(1)
A few years ago, I read a book called, “Timelock”, about the history of time. The author claimed that until the advent of railroads, the average person neither needed, nor wanted, to know the time of day.
He wrote that it was the invention of factories that made people begin thinking about how many hours they worked, and it wasn’t until after World War II that the average person owned a watch.
Think about how life has changed because digital watches now tell us it is 9:57, rather than “about 10 o’clock”. I typically have clients call at exactly the top of the hour, and if either their clock, or mine, is a few minutes off we end up apologizing
to each other for being “early” or “late”.
Well. Several days ago, I drove onto the grounds of the Green Lake Conference Center, checked into my room, and took off my watch. What a fascinating experience! Yes, there is a huge tower that chimes the time, and there are various clocks around the place. So, I know when my tee times are, and I know when to meet clients for our morning sessions. Or, at least, I’m close enough.
But many things have changed. I eat when I’m hungry, rather than because my watch tells me to. I walk, or fish, or take a nap according to the rhythms of my body, rather than according to a digital schedule. I write until I seem to be “done”, rather than because it’s time for a break. Very interesting!
Imagine living any time in the past 10,000, before you got your first watch. When the sun came up, you got up and went to work. When the sun went down, it was time to quit. In the winter, there was less light, and work days were short. In the summer, with more light, there was more work, but also more time to swim, or play, or plant and harvest.
I doubt anyone would want to go back to those days, before the invention of electric lights, antibiotics or telephones, but in that simpler, easier rhythm, I suspect there was greater opportunity to find and enjoy one’s “self”. Time beside a lake, or walking in a wood, soothes the nerves. Time slows down. The heart slows down. Perhaps, even our experience of life slows down.
Yesterday, I watched 3 deer, a rabbit and a woodpecker in the woods behind the bench where I was reading. It was wonderful!
In these past few days, I’ve had the chance to see the impact “time away” has on people. Some grow restless at not knowing exactly when we’ll start or stop our sessions.
One was concerned that he may not have gotten “a full session”, so we spent the afternoon walking and talking about his goals. Funny thing — we never did get around to talking about his business! Instead, he talked about his children and the things he’s missed over the years, and he made some new decisions about spending time with them this summer.
It seems to me that time is a rather “made up” concept. Oh, I admit that for scientists, it has some mathematical reality. And, I guess it has tremendous value for our society. But, does being a minute late really matter?
There’s an old song that says, “I took off my watch, and found I had all the time in the world.” However you measure time, be sure you allow time for your life. Make time, take time for things that are important, for the people you love and the things that bring you joy. Take time to find yourself, and to experience and really, truly LIVE your life, before time runs out, and it’s over.
End of article.
Beautiful isn’t it? Brings a little balance back into our pressure cooker fast pace ridden life.
Jonathan Swift says: “May you live all the days of your life.”
Sandra Carey says: “Never mistake knowledge for wisdom. One helps you make
a living; the other helps you make a life.”
But let me close by reminding everyone that time is in God’s hands. Trust God and do His will and then we can be sure that we’re all making good time.
(1) Welcome to The Innovative Professional’s (TIP’s) Letter! Sunday, June 4, 2000
Written and Published by Dr Philip E. Humbert http://www.philiphumbert.com