Time may be the fire in which we burn,
but our focus is what catches us on fire.
Our focus determines our reality. It has the ability to stress us out, feel tranquil or simply be happy. Time is a limited renewable resource provided we wake up every day. How we use our time and focus sets us on a path of joy or suffering. From the perspective of time we have two considerations 1) what’s urgent and 2) what’s important. Urgency ranges from medical emergencies to our escape activities having no effect on our lives. Importance ranges from pressing problems affecting our ability to live to viewing mindless TV shows. These two perspective can be arranged in such a way to create a matrix of managing attention and thereby effectively using our time. There are various versions of this matrix with many pointing back to The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey. Like many thinkers Mr. Covey borrows ideas from various sources including religious and business principles both of which seek to maximize retention of adherents and/or profit. These principles do this by getting people to commit their resources of attention, time and finances in such a manner to provide positive feedback into the prevailing system.
What if we took this feedback and applied it to ourselves? What if we used our resources to achieve our own ends instead of the purposes of others? Certainly, we can align our purpose with the intent of others or businesses as we decide appropriate in our lives. When we work, we form a contract between ourselves and the business we work for. This is an alignment of purposes. We seek a wage to provide resources for ourselves and create what we envision for our lives. Businesses seek us as resources to achieve their mission whatever that may be. When we align our visions and missions, we plug ourselves into a purpose greater than our own. When our vision and the mission of the businesses we work for do not align, we tend to disconnect from the system and issues pop up like weeds in a garden. Both our personal lives and the efficacy of the business suffers when our vision and missions don’t line up.
When we choose to manage our biz, the system we feedback our resources into is ourselves. With vision we determine what’s important and focus our activities to create the future we want. We use the fire of time as energy to create instead of simply burning us away day by day into obscurity.