In The Art of Stopping Time, Pedram Shojai, the author, shares something we all know; our most treasured resource is time. So how do we leverage it? Stop it!
What we get out of time depends on mindfulness, energy, and how we focus and spend our time. For all of us, time is the great equalizer—we all have the same amount of hours in a day.
The first step is to determine how we are spending our time to begin an assessment to maximize time. Is time spent on something meaningful or pleasurable? Next, consider energy to invest in worthwhile endeavors versus low-energy tasks like doom scrolling social media. Last, Are we mindful? Are we living in the moment?
The author reminds us to cut bait on goals or activities that are no longer relevant and deserve our time. Then, use this newfound time in rewarding areas and produce results.
What’s your ROI on time? In investing, there’s a return strategy. What’s your time investment strategy? When time pops up, say an appointment cancels, or a commute is faster than planned, there’s a decision on how to use this extra time. Like investing, knowing how to “invest” this spare time is essential.
We have more power over our time than we may initially think. While some obligations are required—say, paying taxes or feeding our pets—others are at our discretion. These discretionary activities could include letting go of relationships or no longer relevant or essential activities.
For time, the “how” is as important as the “what.” Are there ways to get two things done at once? Say you want to exercise and spend time with your kid. Could you have your kiddo join you for your run or bike ride? Or, if you have a conference call and need to drop off your child for a playdate, could you drop your kid off while having your conference call? Small decisions compounded make for big-time impacts.
Our mobile phones are a double-edged sword. While they can be productive, it’s a quick way to be distracted or entertained. The next time there’s a fleeting moment, resist the temptation to grab the phone and use it to think through a current problem or reconnect with a past friend.
Be mindful. Be present. Be thankful. On vacation or at work, wherever you are, think “this is the last time I’m ever here.” If this was the case, how would you be present? Being mindful lets us live in the moment and stop time.
While no one can stop time, we can prioritize, organize and be mindful.