Time Management: Putting Time on Your Side
Time is life. It is irreversible and irreplaceable. To waste one’s time is to waste one’s life, but mastery of time usage is mastery of life and making the most of it. Einstein once said, “There is no absolute relation in time between two events, but there is an absolute relation between space and time” (Sharp 1). Time is a mystery. It cannot be tied down by definition or confined inside a formula. Like gravity, it is a phenomenon that we can experience but cannot understand. We are aware of the ageing of our bodies, of the effects of the movements of our planet, and of the ticking of the clock. We learn a little about what we call the past and we know that change is built into our lives. But neither philosophers nor scientists have been able to analyze and explain all of the meaning of time. Not only have they failed to provide easy explanations, but their efforts sometimes seem to have made mystery more mysterious and to have shown us that our lack of understanding was even greater than we supposed.
Some philosophers argue that the passage of time is an important metaphysical fact, but one that can only be grasped by non-rational intuition. Others tell us that the flow of time is an illusion and that the future can no more be changed than the past. Some believe that future events come into existence as the present; the future becomes the actual “moment-in-being.”
When spending money, one presumably tries to balance their expenditures in such a way as to obtain the best possible yield. This means that one will probably refrain from spending all of their assets on a single commodity. Instead, one will distribute their expenditure over a variety of different goods and services. The optimum situation will have been reached when it is impossible to increase satisfaction by reducing expenditure in one field and making a corresponding increase in another. A more technical description of this condition of equilibrium would be to say that the marginal utility of one dollar must be the same in all different sectors of expenditures.
In the same manner, one tries to economize with their time resources. They must be so distributed as to give an equal yield in all sects of use. Otherwise, it would pay to transfer time from an activity with a low yield to one with a high yield and to continue to do this until equilibrium has been achieved. But in reality, neither concentrating all of one’s time and efforts to one activity alone, nor spreading one’s time equally across activities of unequal importance are good methods of managing time.
Time is a scarce resource, although in a rather special way. The amount of iron-ore in the world is fixed. When it has all been converted into iron and steel, we must then rely on recycling or find other metals as an alternative....