LETTER: Prioritise your time properly

A common complaint in the workplace is that there is always more and more work to do, yet less and less time to do it in. But while some people have huge demands on their time, others may find themselves ‘killing time’ for lack of other activity. This strange, abstract concept of time is one that one way or another rules our lives and has occupied the thoughts of great thinkers and writers down the ages. Time has been said variously to be ‘a great healer’ (Seneca), ‘a robber’ (Napoleon), ‘a wise counsellor’ (Pericles). Benjamin Franklin even advised that ‘time is money.’ What is indisputable is that in the absence of a time machine, it is irretrievable and once gone is gone forever, leaving us inevitably with regrets about the things we should have done but didn’t. All too often you hear people excusing their failure to do important things by saying ‘I didn’t have time to....’ What they usually mean is that they did not prioritise their time appropriately. I believe that we can and should ‘make’ time both for ourselves and the people and things that matter most to us. There is no denying the huge pressures and stresses in some people’s lives but as the poet W.H. Davies asked: ‘ What is life, if full of care, we have no time to stand and stare?’ Perhaps there is no time like the present to reassess our use of each wakening hour to ensure that in the words of Rudyard Kipling, we maximise each day by ‘filling the unforgiving minute with 60 seconds of distance run.’ Life seldom presents us with second chances and, much as we would like to, we can never turn back the clock.

Robert Cowan,

Meads Road