Charity should begin at home, but should not stay there. ~ Philip Brooks

You have not lived until you have done something for someone who can never repay you. ~ Anonymous

A good laugh is sunshine in the house. ~ William Makepeace Thackeray

 

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SPENDING TIME

Al Jones

As I reminisced over the previous year, I found guilt. Guilt of things I wanted to accomplish that remain incomplete. Guilt of time lost to frivolous cause, and guilt of inaction when opportunity presented itself to me.

I suppose I could look back and mourn the loss of another year. I suppose I could look in the mirror at the lines on my face and wonder how so much time has passed so quickly. But I know I would not do well as a martyr, so I have to pull myself out of that mindset and turn my attention to what I want for this new year … 2018.

The beautiful thing about time is that it can’t be spent like a credit card.  You can’t “borrow” against it. You can’t spend it until you actually have it. You may have wasted yesterday, or even today, but you can’t waste tomorrow until you’re in it. You can’t even spend the next hour until it’s present. Therefore, it stands to reason, that you cannot waste your time in advance either. Perhaps that’s why so many of us take it for granted. We know that behind every minute we waste, there is another minute to be spent.

That means we have choice. Despite all that we may have failed to accomplish in the past, we can recommit to accomplish it in the future. We can determine that we will waste less time from here on in. We can commit to getting rid of vices that hold us back, and resolve to move forward on tasks, even when we don’t feel like it.

Intent, in itself, is not enough. We must act. We must commit. Although there will always be another tomorrow, another next week, or another year… none of us really knows how many of them we, ourselves, actually have. Although time itself never ends… our time eventually does.

One could argue that the most important moment of time is the beginning. The beginning of a new job. The beginning of a new friendship. The beginning of a new romance. None of these things can be if they never begin. No job gets done if it has never been started. No destination is ever reached if no journey begins. No dream is fulfilled if the chasing of those dreams were never acted on. Therefore, no matter if it be the beginning of a new year that motivates us, or any other date on a calendar that might inspire us, it is just that… a date. Whatever we want to accomplish, we can begin now.

With that knowledge now brought to light, some decisions have to be made as to where to spend our time moving forward. With so much to accomplish, so many goals, and so many demands of our time, we must prioritize. We have wasted time in the past, so we want to make wise use of what time remains. I think we should all make a list of priorities for 2018.

So, if we are to ensure our time is spent wisely, then spending time with others should be at the top of our priority lists. Time with family, time with friends we haven’t seen for a long time, and time seeking new friendships.

Next, on our priority list, should be spending time working on bettering of ourselves. Time at a gym, time walking the dog so that you both get a little exercise, and time reading and expanding our minds.

Third on our list should be community. Spend a little time volunteering. Spend a little time getting to know neighbours. Spend a little time at your child’s school helping out, or at a seniors’ centre. You will, without a doubt, make new friends while doing so.

 

Anything else beyond these top three, is a bonus, folks. No one ever called time spent with a loved one, or friend, a waste of time. No one who has ever contributed to the betterment of their community, or others, in time of hardship, considers that time wasted. So, you see, if we spend our time in the company of others, on bettering our community and ourselves, we should be able to take pride in knowing our time was spent wisely. We’ll look back on 2018 with no regrets as we reminisce again at the beginning of 2019.

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