Think about how many times you have heard someone say, “If I had a time machine I would go back and change …….” They then proceed to make no changes in their lives; continuing as they were, wishing things were different. Twenty years from now they will be saying the same thing, “If I had a time machine…….”
We all do have time machines, but they are disguised as NOW. Every time we say I wish I could go back in time and change something, we should go ahead and make the change NOW, so our 20 year older selves will not be kicking ourselves for not making the change when we first thought about it.
There is an old Chinese proverb that states:
The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago.
The second best time is NOW.
What would your life be like if you harnessed the power of NOW?
If you wish you could go back in time and have exercised more and made better food choices so you would be 40 pounds lighter today, then make those changes NOW so you will be 40 pounds lighter next year. If you start now, you won’t have to look back and wish you had previously started.
If you wish you would have invested in real estate 20 years ago so you would own appreciated real estate today, then buy some investment real estate NOW so in 20 years you will own appreciated real estate. You won’t have to look back and wish you had done it.
If you are looking at your friends who have tripled their money in the last decade by invested in the stock market, and you wish you could go back in time and put some money in the stock market, then put some money in the stock market NOW so in another decade you will have created more wealth just like your friends did. You won’t have to look back and wish you had done it.
If you wish you could go back in time and not borrow so much money so you wouldn’t be in debt today, then stop borrowing money NOW and over time it will all get paid off and you won’t be in debt in the future. You won’t have to look back and wish you had done it.
There are so many things we look back on and wish we had done differently, but then we just keep on doing what we have not wanted to do all along. We often miss that golden opportunity we had when we realized our mistake. That moment of realization is the second best time to act. So why don’t we act?
Isaac Newton knew exactly what was at play here, his first law, the law of inertia: An object at rest will tend to stay at rest until acted on by an outside force. Unless we exercise our own force, our will and desire to make something better, our future will not change. Just what are we waiting for?
I have recently been looking around my house at some things that I have not liked for years. I’m planning on changing those things this year and have already completed some of the projects. Each time I finish a project, I keep asking myself why I didn’t do this sooner. Why did I put up with something I didn’t like and wanted to change? Why didn’t I act earlier?
Well, I am at the second best time to act, NOW, and I am stepping up to the plate. We had been traveling so much since I retired that the things around the house that needed to be fixed never seemed to get done. For the past year COVID has made us stay home which has given us the opportunity to do those things I wanted to do at home but was too busy traveling to get done.
What things do you have staring you in the face at your house that you should have fixed or changed long ago? What do you have at work that you should have changed long ago? I suspect, if you are like all the rest of us, you have a long list. Remember —
Starting is half done.
Take five minutes to write down all the things you have been procrastinating, or the things you wish were different in your life. Then each week pick one thing from the list to accomplish. Continue working on that project until it is finished. Wait a week and then pick another one. Imagine what your life will look like in one year if you knock everything off your list.
Don’t let the ubiquitous excuse of not having enough time stop you. Everyone has the same amount of time allocated to their life; twenty four hours each day, seven days each week, fifty two weeks each year. You do have the time, but you have chosen to use it for something else.
Is the stuff you are using your time on providing you more happiness than making the changes on your list would provide? We all have many elective things on our schedule. What elective things are on your schedule that could be dropped so that you could change your life for the better?
Often it is what we learn to say no to that makes all the difference. Make a list of all the things you are currently doing and see which ones are ripe for dropping off your plate. Cull out the goodactivities on your list to make room for the greatactivities you want to add. NOW is the right time to make this move so that next year you won’t look back and wish you had a time machine.
If you are having trouble choosing how best to spend your time and would like some guidance, contact me about my high performance coaching program so I can help you move to your best self. You deserve all the happiness you can get. NOW is your time!