We have all heard the saying, 'Time is money?' Let me say in the beginning, It is not true.
But Japanese take this saying very seriously. In the 'Toyota Way' many kinds of wastes are recognized and waste of time is a waste taken seriously. The industrial processes are minutely inspected, understood and even a saving of 1 sec is celebrated.
While 1 sec might look small, a reduction of 1 sec. from a 10 sec. process is significant. In an industrial setting same process is repeated thousands of time and small saving of 1 sec.
accumulates to many more hours. A lot more production can happen in those hours
making more money for the organization.
Now let us apply the same sensitivity towards time in our individual life.
Our time use could be divided into 2 categories. Productive and non productive.
Productive Activities: Any activity which helps us get to our life purpose and goals will be a productive activity. The time used on these activities will be fruitful.
Unproductive Activities: A long list of activities which do not add to the output in the
direction of our life goals.
Even without getting into detailed analysis we can recognize some of the time waste in our life. Here is just a glimpse:
How To Convert Unproductive Time Into Useful Time?
There are 2 distinctions here.
First, if we see successful people closely, their day is chockablock with productive
activities. Because they know what they want to achieve. They know what activities will help them achieve the results. So, they know what to engage in with priority, what to delegate and what should be altogether avoided.
But most people in general don't know what they want in life. Their day is like an empty box with 24 slots. They fill it with whatever comes their way.
The first step towards getting a command over our life is to know what we want to achieve. Write it down. When planning your day ask yourself, will this activity help me in achieving what I want? Fill your day with productive activities. Plan your days in advance.
Many times we do things because we can't say no to people. When they see our empty time box they try to put their plans in it. But if our box is filled with well planned out activities we can follow it with confidence.
Second distinction is being ready for unexpected. Their are situations on which we don't have any control. Like a delayed flight. Achievers don't while away time whining over it. They use it for reading important books, industry reports, or reflecting on life matters which need attention.
Here are some suggestions on increasing our productive time.
Like I said in the beginning, time is not money. If we put some money in a bag and open it after 2 years, it will remain the same. In fact it will get devalued in the real world.
But yes, what we do with money makes the difference. After reading this post some people will take action. They will write down a list of important things to achieve, or at least pause for a few seconds and reflect on what's important to them in life but not getting attention. They will make a mental resolve to convert that thought into reality.
Some people will go back to Facebook timeline once again. Watch photographs of people. Comment on a wardrobe malfunction during a fashion show.
What you do next, will make a difference to your life.
Sometimes an image can express much more than what we can say. This picture has evoked many questions in my mind.
I am asking, "What's the true freedom'?
While we can take decisions independently, are there invisible shackles still there? If not, then why do we settle for the ordinary? When we have great ideas in our hearts why do we comprise and go for the mediocre approaches?
What truly govern our actions? The drive to rise, to make the most of our potential, or the survival instinct? Why do we tell the truth in close circles but not in open forums? Why do we criticize the powerful in hush hush voices but keep mum when the occasion arise?
When we know the path, why don't we walk on it and wait for others to lead us?
If we know the shackles are there why not break them? Today and now!