Time - a very crushing issue for everyone. To define time in today's world, it is something where we experience a perpetual scarcity. We are always running for something or the other. Some are even afraid of free time. Some define it very spiritually that it is eternal, for some it is a number, for some it is slow, for some it is fast, for some it is a question of how to pass it, for some it is a question of how to extend it, some are punctual, some are late, for some it doesn't matter because doesn't seem to make sense. You may be in any zone, ultimately it is a 'Relationship with Time'.
In the end, we all have the same time - 24 hours.
I share a very healthy and wonderful relationship with time. I can even say time slows down for me whenever I want and moves fast for me whenever I want.
Have you ever noticed that when you anxiously await a letter (or phone call or email) it tends not to arrive? Then you give up hope and it appears. Have you ever been late and at that time in a hurry to put up the wrong buttons of the shirt, or wear the wrong side of a T-shirt and you tend to get more late? Instead, if you just accept and flow with it saying - yes, I know I am late and other things move smoothly. If you hurry you make more mistakes and then you spend time undoing it.
Most of us grew up hearing cliche statement about time - all the time:
“Stop wasting time!” or
“Time is precious,” or
“Time’s a ticking!”
Everyone's favorite - "Time is Money".
Then there's an eternal statement made by almost every adult we know - “Who has the time!”
Our relationship with time is like all of life’s essentials (like money or any other commodity) is heavily conditioned.
These belief systems about time especially shape our entire existence. This includes beliefs about procrastination, completing on or before time, extending beyond time - you have a session of one hour but it gets extended - either you are aware of time and are unable to tell your client or you are not aware, both are about relationship with time. Let's take one at a time:
1. Who has the time! or I need more time or I don't have time
This is a delusion of lack. We all have 24 hours each day, not less, not more. Universe has given us equally. Where does this conversation of lack come from in your life?
2. Time is Money, time is precious
How is your relationship with money? You may have more money than time or more time than money. So, not look at the comparison aspect of what is more or what is less. Are you always chasing money? (Or are you busy chasing money? that is also time) or Do you have a belief that money goes out easily and fast? or 'I don't understand money?' or Do you relate to statements like 'No matter how much money I earn, it's never enough'.
When you say time is money somewhere you have entered the zone of - "It's never enough". Isn't this the most common belief when it comes to money? Even Billionaires are chasing money. It just isn't enough for some.
3. I don't understand time
What are you trying to avoid? What will happen if you start understanding time? What will you have to do if you start understanding time? Let me put it another way, Time is a combination of numbers. That's why in this article's cover art I have chosen a picture of eternal-spiral clock - WITH ONLY NUMBERS ON IT, NOT THE CLOCK HANDS. How does it feel to look at that picture? What will happen if you understand numbers? What will you have to do if you understand numbers? Do you like to do activities where numbers are involved? What activities you are avoiding by affirming - I don't understand time or numbers or money. These are very subtle and easy ways of avoiding things you don't want to do.
4. I don't like wasting time, there's so much to do
This again comes from our conditioning of time. How many times you heard this in childhood - 'Don't waste time' - 'It is money'
I just read a line in today's ACIM lesson - It is not time that we need. It is willingness.
5. I am punctual or I am always late
I am very punctual, but I never struggle to reach on time. Once, I was late to leave from my place to the client's office at Parel East and in the morning peak hours, it takes about 2.5hours of the drive from my place. I was late by 1 hour. I was fine. I sat in the car to drive and decided will message the client on the way. Guess what? I had empty roads at peak hours and reached there 15 minutes early. One day I was supposed to go to a friends' place at 11 am. It was not a meeting or something where I had to be on dot-time. I took my own time, driving leisurely, getting ready with music, I messaged my friend I will reach by 11:15 am. Guess what? The moment I entered his house, clock struck sharp 11 am.
I have plenty of such incidents in my life. And if I would be late I am completely fine with it.
So being late or being punctual is also not about how good you are at Time Management. It is only about your relationship with time.
Time Management is just a myth where you say i need to organize my schedule and you don't have time for that also. Time is what you believe it to be. I don't have any scheduler or reminder system with me. I know I am taken care of when it comes to time.
6. Time-limit profession:
Everywhere you need healthy boundaries. I have worked with many people on their relationship with time. For example, employees don't leave from office on time, employers work day & night. If you are a coach or consultant, clients generally hijack your time and the one-hour session gets extended it, you don't know how to tell the client - Time's up! Let's take it in the next session or you don't keep a track of time. What is your relationship with time here? It is not about "It is very rude to say Time is up!" It is your belief that it is rude to say. You want to look good and avoid looking bad? But is the client really taking that as rude? Is there an element of Love and Respect in your relationship with time? When there's a relationship of love and respect with time, late or on time, it will not bother you. Automatically sessions will end on time. I coached a client on a video call. We started sharp at 7 am and finished at 8 am, with the last 10 minutes for her to share what she is taking back from the session. Another session I finished in 40 minutes and it went so well. The client had 20 minutes to say what he wanted to say and in that 20 minutes, he not just shared what is he taking back but also we worked on one small conversation which really bothered him for years.
In part 1 what I shared is just one aspect of time - 24 hours clock. Another aspect would be age. We all have plans and what you do is keep them for retirement, or you will say - 'Oh! This is my plan after 5 years', then after 5 years you will so, 'looks like I need to postpone this' or you may not even remember your plan. Like I will travel the world after retirement, I will write a book after retirement, or when my kids grow up and start going to college, or whatever is your sentence.
For you, nothing is now, everything is the future.
I am just 'x' age, getting to my higher spiritual stage will need practice and learning. Everything in our language is something we don't have now - time also (age and clock).
Did you know Jesus started preaching and healing at the age of 30 and he died at the age of 33? Whatever he taught was only in the period of 3 years.
Did you know Adi Shankaracharya (an 8th-century Indian philosopher, theologian, and founder of Advaita Vedanta) wrote his commentary on Bhagavad Gita & Upanishads at the age of 8? At this age, we hardly read school textbooks properly and he wrote a commentary on these spiritual texts and many others.
Did you know Ramakrishna had his first spiritual experience at the age of 6?
Did you know Ramana Maharishi had his first spiritual experience at the age of 16?
Do you still think it takes time to know? No, It happens in an instant.
All you need is an instant. That instant is now. Not in the past or in the future.
You can have a very healthy relationship with time.
Time is this instant. How can it be more or less?
Time is a judgment factor!
Writing this in bold.
At the age of 8, impossible. People can't even understand the gist of Bhagavad Gita even at the age of 50 and 60, how can Adi Shankaracharya write a commentary at the age of 8?
Quality is judged by the time it took to make or create. Imagine an international best-selling book for which the author took 5 years of research and effort to write. And after 10 years author reveals that it just took 4 months to write. How would you as a reader react?
Quality of content has got nothing to do with Time but the depthness, sharpness, willingness, and openness of a person.
Time can never be a judgment factor. For example, will you judge a person's intelligence by his or her age? No, right.
Principle 1 of ACIM:
There is no order of difficulty in miracles.
One is not "harder" or "bigger" than another.
They are all the same.