|Time Management Information|
Talkin About Chicken
Yesterday, I'd just gotten comfortable at my favorite table in my neighborhood Starbucks when I noticed two 70-somethings seated at the table next to me. Although they sat mere inches from one another, they communicated as if they were standing on opposite ends of a dark mountain tunnel.
"I'M WILLING TO GO FAR FOR GOOD CHICKEN," bellowed the gentleman in yellow pants on the left.
"YOU DO LOVE YOUR CHICKEN," agreed his companion, a man whose enormous black glasses made him look like a political cartoon.
I smiled at the poultry lover in a subtle I-like-chicken-too kind of way. Then I removed a fresh yellow highlighter from my pocket, took a sip of my latte, and began to read through the folder of interview notes I'd brought with me. I read one sentence before my concentration was interrupted.
"KNOW WHO HAS SURPRISINGLY GOOD CHICKEN?" queried the man with the glasses.
"WHO?" asked Yellow Pants eagerly.
"SWEAR TO GOD."
Yellow Pants couldn't accept this information. He did, however, agree the shrimp platter was second to none. Yellow Pants then went on to explain, in stupefying detail, the exact location of every good chicken restaurant within ninety miles of the Denver metropolitan area.
I put down my highlighter and began drumming my fingers on the table wondering how long the chicken chatter would continue. I looked around and noticed two men in dark suits sitting at a table on my right. They were tapping into their Palm Pilots, jotting notes onto a legal pad, and strategizing about an upcoming sales meeting. They were doing exactly what people are supposed to be doing at Starbucks: working.
As I listened to the older gentlemen on my left and the salesmen on my right it dawned on me that the biggest difference between retirement and the working years is the ability -- and desire -- to talk about chicken. At length. I wish I had time to think about chicken, I mutter to myself as I jam my folder into my briefcase and head off in search of a quieter table. But I'm busy. I have deadlines. I have to multitask whenever possible. Even my idle time is filled with projects and purpose.
Take running, for example. When I go for a run, instead of admiring the daffodils that are starting to push through the hard-packed winter dirt, I try to generate new story ideas and make sure I keep my heart rate at 70% of maximum for at least 25 minutes.
When I go to the dentist, instead of wasting time in the waiting room by reading about the latest celebrity breakup, I compare the allocation of my stock portfolio against the allocations suggested in Money magazine. No sense wasting a good 20 minutes.
I'm not like this person I know who just converted to part-time and now leaves work at one o'clock everyday to work on his golf game. If I took off at one o'clock, I'd expect myself to write a novel. Or learn Japanese. By dinner.
I didn't realize how bad this constant do-think-plan mentality was until last night when I found myself alone in a restaurant waiting for a friend. I didn't have a notebook so I couldn't jot notes or plan the next day's activities. I didn't have a cell phone so I couldn't check voice mail or leave impressive after-hours messages for my editors. I hadn't even brought a report or magazine to read.
So, I read the menu. Four times. I looked out the window. I read the menu again. I asked for a glass of water. I read the menu again. I checked my watch. I started to sweat and within the space of minutes, I'd wrapped my arms around my waist and begun to take deep sucking breaths like a drug addict curled in a darkened corner of an abandoned warehouse.
By the time my friend arrived fifteen minutes later I was utterly disconsolate. Not because she was late but because I'd been forced to spend fifteen minutes -- 900 whole seconds -- idle and alone with my thoughts. There were things I could have been doing, should have been doing. But I went to the restaurant unprepared. The time had been wasted.
After I explained my dismay to my friend -- who was not nearly as apologetic for her tardiness as I thought she should have been -- she looked at me and asked, gently, "Why did you think you had to do anything? Quiet time is good thing, you know."
And then it dawned on me. The ability to cogitate on things like chicken and Red Lobster are not a side effect of one's employment status; they are a function of one's perspective. My friend was right: idle time is not wasted time. Taking time out, even for 15 minutes, allows you to reflect on your life, generate new ideas and appreciate things like chicken and the many ways it can be cooked and how many other animals, when cooked, taste like chicken. It's why people take vacations and have Sundays off and why there are wonderful things in the world like books and plays and champagne and hiking trails. Idle time may not be good for our careers, but it's essential to our souls.
So here's my challenge: for the next week try to take time every day to be alone with your thoughts. Hide your to-do list. Turn off the radio in your car. Look at the clouds. Go to bed a half-hour earlier without a book. Do something because, well, just because. Then, when you've figured out how to be idle -- how to do or think or talk about anything that pleases you even for a brief amount of time every day -- let me know how it goes. I'll be with the two old guys at this great new chicken restaurant down the street.
Copyright, 2005, Shari Caudron.
Shari Caudron is an award-winning columnist, writing coach, and author of "What Really Happened," a collection of humorous stories about the lessons life teaches you when you least expect it. Shari regularly delivers speeches to women's groups about how to transform ordinary experiences into opportunities for personal growth. Website: http://www.sharicaudron.com E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
This RSS feed URL is deprecated, please update. New URLs can be found in the footers at https://news.google.com/news
Three time management skills to achieve financial success - Ophthalmology Times (press release) (blog)
CMI Time Management Releases the New TouchTime® III Time Clock and Workforce Management Terminal - BioSpace (press release) (blog)
Managing Time to Accomplish More
Time is inelastic. Despite what some of us persist in believing, it will NOT magically expand to accommodate all we have to do.
Time Management: A Non-Renewable Resource
Benjamin Franklin wrote: "If you want to enjoy one of the greatest luxuries in life, the luxury of having enough time, time to rest, time to think things through, time to get things done and know you have done them to the best of your ability, remember, there is only one way. Take enough time to think and plan things in the order of their importance.
Pacing Yourself Through Change
How to Find More Time in Your Day-Balancing Career and Family
Goal Planning-Achieving balance in a person's life requires assessment of one's goals and priorities. This translates into sitting down in a quiet atmosphere and taking just a few minutes to think about "What are my priorities in life? What could I never live without?" When one is clear about the things that are important to them in life, it is easier to determine which errands, assignments, and projects to take time out to complete or to dump or delegate.
Work Smarter Not Harder
To work smarter all you need is the consciousness of the present. This is possible only when you cast off your emotional bindings, this helps you relieve your prejudice.
How to Define a Successful Time Management Strategy
One of the most challenging aspect in life is time management. In the current fast changing environment, time management is very important in both your personal and official life.
Productivity at Home
Increased productivity, the ability to get more value for our time, our land, or our invested money, is as important at home as it is in the workplace. Let's consider the case of our imaginary friend Jane, and her grandmother.
Get More Done at Your Office: Focus on These Eight Areas for Increased Productivity
Your productivity depends on good tools and effective environments, and on using them both well. It can be overwhelming to get your office into shape and still get your work done.
Time Management For Home Business Owners
As each day passes, and more and more things need to get done with your business, you may find yourself alittle overwhelmed with how much is left to be done. This is nothing new, and a problem that almost every home business owner encounters.
What is "Life Balance" and How Can You Attain It?
We all face decisions that involve doing things that affect competing priorities. We all have three different lives or worlds that compete for our attention, energy and activity.
Isn't It Time For You?
Does it seem like there is never enough time in the day? Why is there plenty of time for everyone and everything but ourselves? The fact is that you only get one shot at this life so it is important to spend it doing something you love. The good news is that you have a choice, you can continue to go on being overwhelmed letting time and life slip away, or you can make the time and start living the life you really want.
How To Manage Your Time
I would like to touch upon a subject that it is not too often included as part of a home business course, tutorial, ebook or web site and I feel it is vital to the success of your home-based business.What am I talking about?I am talking about Time Management.
Being Busy Does Not Equal Being Productive
How many people do you know who are so busy being busy that they never seem to get anything worthwhile done? Does that describe you, maybe even just a little bit?Being busy all the time, through necessity, is a curse. Being busy all the time, for the sake of it, is madness.
Could you use a "Stop Doing" list?
One of the tried and true organization and time-management tools is the trusty old "to do" list. I was trained to diligently put one together at the end of the day for the following day, and whatever tasks I failed to complete, to carry it forward.
7 Reasons to Take Breaks at Work
My job in Chicago began with three months of probation.I was petrified to leave my desk.
5 Time Savers You (Probably) Havent Tried Yet
1. Do tasks less frequentlyClean house every 10 days rather than every 7.
Prioritize Your Life for Success
Today, it is hard to open an e-mail newsletter, a website, or an offline magazine and not see someone talking up the importance of time management.The time management gurus are going out of their way to teach us how to set priorities in our work week, how to organize those priorities, and then finally stick to our priorities to get more done.
Expand Your Time
In our time-crazed society, lots of time is what most of us don't have. Yet, all of us would like to have more time.
Peace Of Mind At The Workplace
Work brings together people of different characters and behavior, and this often causes friction, resentment and stress. Sometimes the boss is too demanding, colleagues may be unpleasant, there might be too much work or the working conditions may not be comfortable.
Winning The Fight Between You And The Clock
"Slaves to the clock" was the cover story in the March issue of CEO magazine."You can never out work a problem, you have to out think it.
|home | site map|