Being late may not win the race but could win the contest as a strategy. Running late is a tiny excuse that begins as a choice then stems into an inconvenient little trait. Habits are like that. The tendency to delay honoring a schedule, becomes a practice that is hard to change. There are many great reasons for being late and everyone has one.
The world is spinning faster. A lot of people notice and confirm how fast time flies. Well, it is already the end of May! And some people know how many days remain in the year. This sense of the passage of time requires new skills of management. One skill that doesn’t work is packing more things to do in less time. There is a proposed word for operating like this. Tidsoptimist – a person who’s habitually late because they think they have more time than they do. You will not see the word tidsoptimist because there is not enough evidence to support making it so.
We all have examples of how to run out of time. Minimizing the effect of doing so with the word “just” is an early indicator of a looming problem. Once we are ready to leave and notice five more minutes is available we attempt to do a six-minute task. There are many natural time consumers. Let us count the ways. 1. Read one more chapter in the book. 2. Watch one more short video. 3. Write one more post. 4. Start one more load of laundry. Before you know it, you are on the far side of time with no way to make up the lost time.
Time as a commodity has a value greater than the adage time is money. Time is measured in increments and aide communication. In our mind’s eye, we know it takes X number of minutes to drive X amount of miles. We forget to factor in that there are other people attempting to do the same thing.
The value of the day starts as a product of the quality and duration of sleep the previous night. The more wicked attitude about time is to place a higher value on your own time than that of others. A responsibility accompanies an agreement to honor a predetermined time, be it a meeting, a class, or an appointment. All time matters.
Everyone’s time is best considered important. When time slips away, one of the parties is left waiting. There is no problem being early. Waiting starts to accumulate at the appointed time. But the weight of time that passes after the agreed increases with each tick of the second hand. We naturally devalue our own time, but tardiness devalues the other’s time.
We run on an internal clock. It may be a case that the internal clock is out of sync. Some clocks run fast, other internal clocks run slow. The sense of 60 seconds moves through our system at a different pace. The clock is right when everything runs as planned, a smooth departure, efficient runtime, and safe arrival. On the occasion that a person who habitually arrives late, arrives on time and waits, the wait reinforces the idea that running late is acceptable.
There is beauty in the moments. It is okay to sit and wait. Nothing is so pressing that being early is a bad thing. Being a little bit early is thoughtful, respectful, and allows time for magic to happen. You may witness a miracle, extend a kind hand to another, or chat with a stranger to whom your words make all the difference in their world. When always in the doing, we miss the good stuff. Trust and respect need time and when rushing to the next thing, such things are down-played. As skillful as it feels, time is time and waits for no one. Time is finite, circumstances infinite.