Saving time

The words “saving time” roll off the tongue so easily, and yet it is such a loaded expression.

The word “saving” indicates value that we (personally or as a society) have assigned to something. We only save things that are precious to us – money, jewellery, treats, things of beauty, the best of something.

Usually the verb “save” is used with one of two pronouns. We save “for” or we save “from”.

We save a good book for a rainy day, our leave days for a well-deserved holiday, money for a comfortable retirement, the best treat for last, the good cutlery for a celebration, or a beautiful dress for a special occasion.

And we save good food from being spoilt, the dry washing from the imminent rain, a favourite decoration from exposure to the weather, our cars from rust, electricity from wasteful use, water from running down the drain.

Efficiency and good time management are skills we tend to aspire to, especially in our work environments. Many of us are still working from home and finding ways to make time work for us in this challenging space in the midst of family life. What do we consider a waste of our time? And what are we saving our time for or from?

I have been challenged this week to be careful about the way I label activities as a “waste of” or “worthy of” my time…to be intentional about saving time from true time-eaters that drain me and take me away from purpose-filled activity and people I love. And to save time not purely for more work, but for interruptions by the people I love – because they should never be labelled as a “waste of my time”.

Obviously there is a balancing act involved and I am still working out the details…

What are you saving your time from and for?

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