I am, of course, not the first to tell you that we live in a world full of distraction. As a modern day gentleman, you are, no doubt, very keenly aware of the frivolousness of so much of what demands our time and attention.
Yet still somehow we find ourselves constantly in a place of “too much to do, with too little time”. And although I truly do not mean to diminish how busy you are with all that you are juggling, if we sit back and truly assess what we spend our time doing during the day, chances are that most of us could identify plenty of tasks that could be cut out altogether. We spend 5 minutes doing this, 3 minutes doing that, 10 minutes doing that…it adds up to a substantial portion of our day that could be used more fruitfully.
The reason I even call this out, is to make a broader point concerning something I’ve seen become a more and more prevalent issue…our inability to be consistent.
There is a lot packed into that statement, and yes, we could chew on that for several articles in a row only to scratch the surface. But indulge me for a few more minutes to ask yourself some difficult questions, and honestly examine areas you may be able to improve.
More and more I’m seeing people unable to follow through on what they are committing to. It seems that we are becoming increasingly comfortable with our collective inability to follow through. This concerns me greatly and I think that we, as gentlemen living in a very distracted world, need to set a more consistent example.
Of course I’m not implying that conflicts do not arise and our inability to follow through is always due to our lack of discipline or commitment. That would be ignorant, insensitive, and downright foolish.
I simply want you to challenge yourself to look at how you are spending your time throughout the day, and ask a very honest question.
“What areas of my day, that take my time, truly demand that time as a result of a responsibility that I have committed to?”.
Whatever you are not able to classify in that category should be honestly evaluated in order to determine its usefulness. I will dare to assume that most of us, if the exercise is performed truthfully, will be able to identify a large number of things we do throughout the day that are, if I’m being honest, time wasters.
It really is quite astounding how we take our time, which we all agree is our most valuable asset in terms of our ability to serve others and impact the lives of those around us…and fill it with things that in the end, are only serving the purpose of wasting it. We like to go around saying, “Ugh I wish I could do that, I just don’t have the time!”, but I firmly believe that most of us have no business using that excuse. The majority of us are spending much of our time (more than we are willing to admit) watching the latest episode of our favorite TV shows, scrolling uselessly on Social Media, or indulging any number of the other countless distractions we have vying for our attention. Then when it comes time to serve, to act, to help, to listen, to do ANYthing other than focus on our needs and our desires…we all-to-often push the blame onto “not enough time”.
I know this is a touchy topic, and I don’t want to offend. I certainly don’t want to discourage. Please hear my words not as an allegation, but as a challenge presented with the best of intention to help you help yourself grow as a modern day gentleman. We all have areas of our lives we could purge for the sake of opening up opportunities to love and serve others. Some are willing to examine themselves honestly to identify those areas, others are content to live with an inward focus. I challenge each of you to push back against the latter temptation, and be persistent in your striving to identify things that waste your time, in order that you may be able to make room to faithfully follow through on your commitments.
Doing so could set a powerful example for those around us that being consistent, trustworthy and reliable, should be valued. And that is an effort well worth your time.