The other day I blocked off my calendar to have several hours of focus time. No meetings, no chores, no errands. My checklist was in front of me, and my priorities were clear.
Over the next few hours I was busy. I flipped through a couple of magazines sitting on my desk. I opened a link that a friend shared and entered an internet rabbit hole. By the end of the day, I’d also got a few things checked off my list. But not nearly what I had hoped too.
Where did the time go? I had saved this day to get so much done. I had blocked off my calendar thinking that time was my most precious resource. There’s never enough of it, right? What happened?
This a reminder that the real value of time is not what’s on the calendar or the clock. The real value of time is what happens in our minds from moment to moment. It’s how we use attention.
A similar thing happens when we spend time with people, only to have our attention locked in our phones. Or when we take our kids to the park, only to be lost in thoughts about work or dinner or that conversation we wish we wouldn’t have had.
What matters is not where we are, or how much time we have. What really matters is how well we place attention on the things that matter most. Starting now.
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