It’s Friday and I had yet to get my blog post done – couldn’t decide on a topic. In my e-mail inbox was an update from my LinkedIn Business Coaches for Entrepreneurs Group, with a headline for a blog post entitled When Time Seems to Slip Away and the first few lines where talking about not getting a blog post done. Perfect! Someone, in the same boat as me, who maybe has a solution. While it helped to read that I was not alone, I realized I had some solutions - I see this issue with my clients all the time. Half way through sharing a few ideas in the comment box, I realized I was writing my blog post! So, if you are feeling like time is slipping away, here are a few ideas and a big THANK YOU to David Doulos for the inspiration!
I have found a couple of different reasons for why my clients, and myself, feel like time is slipping away. Here are the three most common with a solution for each:
1. Sometimes, the feeling comes when small, urgent tasks get in the way of something important. One option is to do the big, important thing first. Another is to work in ‘power hours’ where you work on the big project for 45-50 min and spend the remainder of the hour knocking off small tasks. Maybe the most common issue falls under generalized fear – fear of failing, fear of success, fear that the project is not really worth while, fear the project is bigger than their talents etc. and they need to examine the fear and find the work through or around.
2. A less obvious reason for the feeling of time slipping away is allowing too much thought – about other tasks and projects, about mistakes made, about upcoming deadlines – the myriad of mental chatter makes time feel faster where focused calm attention to the task at hand slows it down. Be fully focused on each task and project. Give it your full attention and you will get your full measure of time.
3. Time can also feel like it is slipping away when you are off the mark on what is really important. Every priority is being impacted by rapid change and what was important 6 months ago has given way to an as-not-yet-recognized new priority. Never has change happened so quickly; never have priorities and markets shifted so quickly. I help clients build what I call Future Awareness – a way of looking ahead on a regular basis to recognize more quickly when they need to change priorities, shifts processes and otherwise rearrange their business to leverage what is coming so they stay relevant. Maybe the feeling of time slipping away is really your gut telling you that you are working on a now-outdated priority and it’s time to adjust course.
As an additional resource, you might want to pick up Harold Taylor’s recently published – Slowing Down the Speed of Life .
Linear time, measured in minutes and hours is an invention of the industrial age as is the 40 hour Mon. – Fri. work week. The industrial age is over – it reached the tipping point, collapsed and died around 2006. Time itself is really fractal – it speeds up, slows down, loops around. You know it. You’ve experienced it. Time is perceived. If you perception is that it is slipping away, it is probably time to rethink what’s important, what work really makes a difference and what activities make time go faster and which slow it down.