Sometimes it’s easy to forget or overlook simple lessons we learned a long time ago, and that whether we put those learnings into practice (or not) is a reflection on the personal values we project to others. In this case, I’m talking about time and its value to me and those around me.

Recently, I’ve been giving a lot of thought to the message that I send out to others about myself and my brand. In thinking about this, I’m going to let you all in on a little secret: There are lots of things that make me happy, and lots of things that annoy me, but the one thing that I value above all else is TIME.

TIME. It’s the one thing that money can’t buy.

TIME. It’s the one thing that you can never get back.

TIME. It’s the one thing that most of us take for granted.

I do a lot of work with the St. Baldrick”s Foundation, which raises money for Pediatric Cancer Research. In doing so, I have the honor and privilege of meeting some really amazing people — some are kids battling cancer, some are parents who have lost a child to cancer, and occasionally I get to spend time with people who have conquered the odds and beat cancer. The one thing that each one of them has in common is the concept of how precious TIME really is.

Most people lose sight of the importance TIME plays in our interactions with others.

  • If you make someone wait for you, you are sending a message that your time is more valuable than theirs.
  • If you miss a deadline, it causes more work for others, infringing on their time.
  • If your house if filled with clutter and you waste time looking for things, you could be using that time more wisely.

My message is simple: Value time — yours and other’s.

If you are surrounded by people who take advantage of your time, hold them accountable. Call them out on it. Demand better. If you just accept that you are always late, you are lowering the bar instead of rising to the challenge of doing better.

We may not have control over how much time we have, but we do have control over what we do with the time we’ve got.

(A version of this post appeared originally on simplyBorganized.com and is reposted with permission.)

 

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