So Long, So Short – The Irony of Time

So long yet so short,
With the ability to crawl and fly,
So cheap yet quite costly,
It is given freely but spent like money.

I had a discussion with a dear friend of mine as I planned to take a long trip which was going to last for a while. It meant we weren’t going to see each other for a very long while with a possibility of never. Well just a possibility. She commented, ‘’that’s quite long’’. My response came like an opened tap which water hasn’t flown through for a while, only for water to suddenly begin to gush out. I said “so long, so short, the irony of time”. Even for me the one who uttered the phrase, it was a case of ‘talking’ before ‘thinking’. The usual order is ‘thinking’ before ‘talking’ I believe.

This drove my thoughts to the concept of time and how it applied to different people. I noticed, while some people do not have enough, some seem to have a lot to spare. If only it was possible that the ones with little could take from the ones with a lot to spare and add to theirs – Something for the innovators to work on. Taking a quick look at the usual work week, we notice a common trend most of the time. Some days seem faster than others. Most of us tend to experience very fast Mondays and extremely slow Fridays. While it usually seems Monday has just 1 hour and Friday has like 36 hours, we all know they all have 24 hours apiece.

From experience, the reason this always seems so is because we always have a lot on our desks (meetings, reports, planning etc.) on Monday mornings.  We get engulfed in trying to complete tasks and clearing our desks that we lose consciousness of time.  This is worse when we are unable to achieve what we planned to. The time seems inadequate and then comes the concept of working overtime. Many a time I have missed meals throughout the day because I was trying to meet up with set targets. Some few times, the janitor had to come and practically ask me to leave the office.

Fast forward to Friday and it could be another story entirely. We all are looking forward to the weekend, the TGIF with friends -The bars, cinemas, clubs and other fun stuffs to do. We look forward to the rest and other events we got planned for the weekend. We can’t wait for the day to end so the day seems longer than usual.  Someone once said “at that moment you check your time and it is 9am, only to check again 4 hours later and it is just 9:30am”. I can’t find a better way to explain Friday and other long days at work. The time just crawls with no end in sight. I call them the 100 hours day.

Another comparison of time will be focused on its utilisation by two groups of people. The first group can’t seem to have enough.  They work late into the night to achieve goals, actualise dreams, meet targets and for a tomorrow that is better than today. The others are what I call the que sera sera people.  They have more than enough time to spare. Lazing around from dawn to dusk with no goal in sight or dream in mind and just flowing with the wind.

Our utilisation of time is a critical factor in the achievement of success. I remember the sayings of my school Chancellor (Dr. David Oyedepo), who also happens to be up there on my list of role models, he told us then, “if you sleep eight hours every day, by the time you are thirty, you would have slept off ten years of your life”. Why would I want to sleep for ten years is the question we all should ask ourselves. There is so much to do within a very short period.

Get busy doing something that will have an impact on your world. Get going to do that which must be done. You can achieve that dream today. Why postpone that goal till tomorrow when you can reach it today and free tomorrow for reaching another.

I will close with two of my favourite quotes. The first is “what needs to be done must be done and will be done” and the second is “you will have all the sleep you want when you die, so work while you are here”. You will be amazed at what you can achieve.

So long yet so short, the irony of time.

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