What Time Is It Really?

The real secret to success.

One of the first introductions I had to self development came to me in a workshop designed to increase sales, profitability and client retention. The workshop was being delivered by an awesome lady who was a master in behavior, motivation and success. Sadly I don’t remember her name but the first words that came home to me in the first ten minutes of her introduction were this.

What time is it?

Just before she asked this question the audience was asked, “How many summers have you had? The next question was, “How many summers do you have left, assuming you live till until you’re ninety?”

The answer to the first question was NOW. Then came the next question.

Where are you?

Hmm. Now this lady was really doing my head in. I was there to define success, create goals and ramp up my ability to achieve. The answer to that question was HERE.

O.K. Now we know this, can we get on with it. I don’t have time for all this gaff. You’ve just pointed out that if I define my life in terms of years it stretches on for a considerable amount of time. Now you’ve just divided that by some incredible calculation down to one season per year and my head is spinning with how little time I have left to achieve what I want. One experience per year which of course was the same calculation and yet, relative to time I was now chaffing at the bit for the point.

And that WAS the point.

It took me a whole lot of Summers to get it. I remained fixated on achieving, growing income, gathering information and knowledge that would lead me toward a better life without ever really stopping to ask the question, “what life is that anyway” The anxiety I created for myself along the way was immense. Don’t rest, work hard, be the best and when that happens all will be well. Or so I thought. It took me even more Summers to realise that success comes in many different forms, measures and experiences than what I had thought all those years ago.

The question of time. So what time is it, NOW and where am I, HERE. The beauty of these words is in the simplicity of what they really mean . Of course it’s all about mindfulness. Being in the moment and choosing to make the most of it in all it’s facets and complexities, and mostly the simplicity of the concept.

In my early working life, words like enjoyment, fun and happy were put into the future of my life, words like fail, guilt and sadness were put into the past and words like success, achieve and work were relegated to the present.

Be aware of every moment. We all have choice whether we think we do or not. Life doesn’t always go as expected and our plans don’t always come to fruition. It is in these very moments we have choice. It’s not the choice to control an outcome, but we do have choice as to how we choose to respond to the outcome. So much of what we do in our heads has so little relevance to past or future. It is only in the present moment that we have the power to change an outcome. Challenges arise and cause us to look backward or forward into experiences that are no longer valid, (past) or into a the future that hasn’t occurred yet. Becoming aware of every moment does truly reduce stress and anxiety with great significance and this is the best state to be in for problem solving.

Creativity. Do you remember being a child and lost in the moment of play, fun or some equally wonderful state. Creativity comes form the inner child. That ability to put aside the ego long enough to allow all your faculties to come into play. Daydreaming is greatly underestimated in today’s fast paced world. All our resources reside in the unconscious mind, free from judgement and personal programs. This is the perfect state for peace and stability.

The recipe. It’s the moments between the doing, the business and all that we are required to do in life that are our gold. We tend to fill these moments up with phones, inside conversations and other intellectual pursuits rather than allowing ourselves moments to breath out and just be. Practicing mindfulness between the actions of the day WILL inevitably spill over into mindfulness whilst we are also busy, therefore allowing greater concentration, greater problem solving, creativity and the perfect state of being.

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