Confession: How I Wasted Valuable Time Given Me

Photo credit: Dino Reichmuth (StockSnap.IO)

I’m a great fan of J.R.R. Tolkien’s »Lord of the Rings« trilogy. I’ve read the books and seen the movies (as well as specials about them) multiple times.  When I recently revisited the movie trilogy something Gandalf tells Frodo in »The Fellowship of the Ring« caught my attention.

All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us ~Gandalf (The Fellowship of The Ring)

Quite apart from the situation in which Gandalf speaks these words (Frodo is lamenting everything that has come to pass since the ring has come to him and wishes none of it had ever happened), they cover nicely what I’ve been contemplating for the last couple of days.

What do I do with the remaining time given me?

The first 5 decades of my life have gone by so fast!

This really struck me as I was talking to one of my nephews who had been going through their high school exams. I find myself wondering how that can even be. It seems like only yesterday I was sitting in my school’s gym struggling to get through my physics exam. But it’s been more than 30 years!

Then, as I checked my email earlier this week, I had another realisation: life can suddenly be over!

In my inbox was a notification of the sudden death of an acquaintance at the young age of 46! Having someone close to my own age (or even younger) die, jolted me into realising that my life too can suddenly be over.

What then have I done with the time given me so far?

Looking back I’m quite horrified to realise that for most of my life so far I’ve just been going through the motions. There were (almost) no conscious decisions on my part.

Sure it was me who …

  • decided to study something which would at least give me ‘multiple opportunities on the job market’
  • decided to apply for and then accept a position with a project management company
  • worked hard and rose steadily through the ranks of that company for the next almost two decades
  • bought a house because it was a great investment in my future

But all of these things just sort of happened to me. None of the decisions leading up to them were part of anything conscious in which I had given what I wanted to do with the time given me any kind of serious consideration.

That is changing though!

I very consciously decided to …

  • quit my job and move to another country to pursue a more meaningful life
  • take a very serious financial step back to live more in alignment with my core values
  • finally become a certified coach and help people figure out what their more meaningful life can look like when lived in alignment with their core values.

Even if there still isn’t a conscious idea about where these decisions are taking me, at least I am now deliberately coming to them and checking to see if they are in alignment with my core values.

By no means do I have it all figured out. Deciding on what to do with the time given me, and more importantly, give that time meaning not just for myself but for others too, is something I still wrestle with.

I know the time will come when I know how to do that though. If only because I’m now very consciously giving the answer to that all important question ‘what do I do with the time given me?’ very serious consideration!

How about you? Do you think about what to do with the time given you? How will you use it?

Share your thoughts below and let me know. Be as specific as you can when you share your thoughts. Other people, Trailblazers like you, will be inspired by your ideas and actions.

As always…

Go dare greatly!