Yesterday, I was struck by the many opportunities to examine our use of time. As a first-time visitor to a local nail salon (yes, I took time for myself yesterday!), the owner spoke of how he works 7 days a week to serve his customers and doesn’t have anytime for himself. He also doesn’t have time for his business. It was apparent that the entire salon was in dire need of a major clean-up. Unfortunately, this was not apparent when I first entered, but the vision of it will keep me from becoming a repeat customer. The owner, like his salon, was a physical wreck. He smoked and paced like a wild caged animal while on his cell phone during his break. The lesson here: if you don’t take care of yourself, you can’t take care of anything else either. You’re not the only one who can tell you’re running on empty.
That same evening, I attended a visitation service for one of my client’s mothers who passed away this weekend. While visiting with the family and friends who had gathered there in her honor, it was apparent that many had come straight from work to pay their respects. How many times during the day do we think that there is just not enough time to do anything, much less all the items on our to-do list? Yet, when the clock stops ticking for those that we know and love, we find that time expands. We find the time when it matters most. Lesson here: don’t wait for the clock to stop. It’s too late – either for those you love or yourself.