Valuing Your Time – Saying No so that You Can Say Yes

Once I began to appreciate the preciousness of time, I began to hold it in the highest regard.

I no longer wear “busy” as a badge of honour. I have learned that saying no has actually allowed me to say yes. When I turn down opportunities that do not align with my values or clearly say no to commitments that would push me to sacrifice another aspect of my life, I am free to say yes to all the areas of my life that I truly value.

Figuring out what motivates me in each circumstance (Is it challenge? Is it faith? Is it health? Is it money? Is it giving back?), being true to myself, and prioritizing these values in each situation creates a driving force that leads me through my day.

Along my journey, I have come to learn something even more valuable: something magical happens when you are able to switch your understanding of time from being a concept you must find to being something that comes from within you – something you make. This changes the game completely and allows you to take ownership of your relationship with the idea of time.

In The Big Leap, the author journeys through the difference between our traditional absolute Newtonian idea of time (something that is external to you) and Einsteinian Time, essentially being Relativistic Time. When you feel that you are the source of time – that you can create as much time as you like – you are able to take ownership of the whole idea, always having the time you need.

In fact, while our society still bases itself around the twenty-four-hour clock, as you take on this new perspective, you are able to transcend the idea of time almost all together, allowing you to be truly present in every moment – whether it be during moments at home, moments with family and friends, moments performing work, moments spent in nature, moments experiencing the world, moments laughing, or moments deepening faith.

I am continuously exploring the importance of being wealthy in time. Through this imperfect, yet wonderful exploration, I have discovered that making time for the things that fill up my cup – the actions that align with my highest self – potentiates my ability to pour from my cup. This is what freedom feels like to me.

If you’d like to read more of my articles on time, follow the link below:  https://www.booksandbridges.net/time-the-most-precious-commodity-of-all/


Time - The Most Precious Commodity of All

I was standing in our backyard at 6 a.m. on a misty Thursday morning (my six-month-old puppy had to pee) when my neighbour stepped out onto his deck, took in an exuberant breath of the dewy air, and enthusiastically wished us a good morning. The way he welcomed the day radiated appreciation for life, and it inspired me to deepen my own relationship with time.

As my pup and I moseyed around the damp grass for a few minutes, I started thinking about how important it is to relish every moment – to greet each day and the experiences it holds with gusto, just like my neighbour had displayed.

Too often we forget about being intentional with our time. Success, accomplishment, and daily obligations can consume our thoughts more than they should. Setting aside time on a regular basis to evaluate what truly makes us happy and fulfilled is well worth the effort. Once we understand what makes us happy, we can set aside more time to do those things. Because when it comes down to it, how we spend our time is more important than anything.

I’ve realized there are certain actions and commitments (and even people!) that fill a person up, and there are ones that take away. It is essential to distinguish the elective life experiences that provide us with energy and fulfillment from the ones that drain, overwhelm, and cause us to retreat. After all, an empty water pitcher cannot fill up another cup without visiting the tap first. 

For as long as I can remember, I have been observant of the sentiment and intention of others to an uncomfortable level. It is because of this particular trait (sensitivity, I think) that I spent many years paying too close attention to the reactions of others, caring too much of what others would think. I spent a lot of time doing what I thought was expected of me – by society, by employers, by whomever. Sometimes I still catch myself doing this now, but I am quick to shake myself free from this leash of subservience. I’ve realized I’d rather spend my time just being me.

Each one of us deserves to take time for ourselves, to reconnect with the things that really matter, and to sit in gratitude. A true appreciation of the time we are given encompasses respecting even the smallest of moments. 

So now I live in each moment. I let myself “dance” in Home Depot and I write and I hug my dog and I attempt to lift heavy things and I carry around my cat like a cat lady and I meditate and I smile as my boyfriend serenades me while we drive and I pray and I watch adoringly as loved ones embrace each other at the airport and I make jokes at the expense of myself and I dare to be beautiful and I laugh and I cry and I feel… and I am fulfilled.

And as I walked back inside our home on that misty Thursday morning, I felt incredibly thankful for the unexpected interaction with my zealous neighbour. Through that short experience, I was reminded of how important it is to spend my time purposefully – to live a life of intention.

My hope here is simple: I hope that you will spend your time with intention too.