Thursday, 20 May 2010

Life is always busy

Having just lived through a couple of very busy weeks with another fast approaching, I've concluded that life is just busy.

When I actually review how I've spent my time, I find that I actually spent lots of it being very unproductive. It's all about choices really. I can always fill my days, weeks, months etc with busyness or I can choose to spend my time more wisely.

I sometimes envy others who I perceive to have more 'free time' yet they too all say, 'I need more time!'. I want to say things like, 'wait until you have kids!' yet young(er) men I know still manage to fill their time quite easily.

It raises the question, what is a good use of my time?

I usually try to organise life in terms of my priorities which, for the most part, remain pretty constant. My list usually looks like this: disciple of Jesus, husband, father, son, individual, church leader. Each area has some sub-categories but it is with regard to these headings that I generally try to allocate my time. Do I always get it right? No. Often my priorities get confused, particularly since I began serving the church full time, and I make some time choices that adversely affect my wife and children.

Solomon reminds us in chapter 3 of Ecclesiastes that there is a time for everything. He doesn't clearly say when that time is! He also shows us that our lifetime is fleeting compared to the eternity that awaits the believer. My problem is overcoming the apathy that holds me in laziness instead of treating time as precious until the day comes when I get to see my Lord.

From a secular perspective, Stephen Covey asserts in '7 Habits of Highly Effective People', that time management can be divided into 4 quadrants that reflect whether activities are important/unimportant and urgent/non-urgent. He advocates spending more time on important and non-urgent activities, which basically means forward planning, in order not to waste time on urgent but unimportant tasks that often crop up and occupy time that would be better spent elsewhere.

I'm now feeling slightly hypocritical for spending time on this blog yet currently deem it more fruitful than many of the alternatives filling my head.

My summary thoughts are that I need to consider more carefully how I spend my time, who I spend that time with and not look back with regret that I filled lots of time with little to show for it.

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