As a college student, I spend a lot time around very stressed, very sleep deprived individuals. Nearly every day I hear people complaining,”I wish I had more time!” or “There’s not enough time!” or “If I just had one more day or hour or even half an hour!”
But here’s the catch: you don’t have more time. And unlike your parents who will eventually give in to your complaints, time is just relentless. Or perhaps a better way to phrase that is: time will go on despite your protests. Often we categorize time as the enemy. As an unwavering barrier that blocks us from accomplishing all of our dreams and goals. But time is not an enemy here. In fact, there really is no enemy.
My old biology teacher used to say that instead of looking at tests as points you can lose for getting a question wrong, look at each question as a way to gain points up to 100. You have to earn the points instead of the common belief that the points are a given until you mess up. That’s how I look at time now. Each minute isn’t a given — you have to earn it. Be it through rest, study, work, play. And you can earn up to 100 points. The best part is that you get to pick which “questions” you want to place those points in.
Do you choose to place your points in the now? Enjoying every minute and not thinking of the future? Do you choose to place your points in the future, which means working and studying in the now in hopes of enjoyment later? Do you devote points to “me” time, or spend every point on relationships?
Because you can only earn 100 points, you must compromise some “questions” for others depending on what you value and what you prioritize. Unlike high school biology tests, each person has the option to pick where they want their points to go — and there is no right or wrong answer. Don’t let norms or beliefs dictate how you choose to earn your time.
I’m not saying that it’s all that easy to choose where to spend your time —whoever had an easy high school biology test? — it is painful, it leads feelings of guilt and anger. But just know, that in the test of time, no one can fail, not even you.