Recently, I am hearing this phrase a lot: “It takes too much time!”. Explain to me what “too much time is”, exactly? Is it 10 seconds, 30 seconds, a minute, 5 minutes what? Nothing takes too much time. It is my experience and my observation that a person really isn’t interested in doing whatever it is at all, so they use “It takes too much time” as their excuse for not doing something.
Did you ever wonder why our “To Do List” is so long? It is the same principle at work here too. We simply do not want to do the things on the list so we let them slip to the bottom of the list and only the things which are screaming at us get done.
There may be things truly on that list which have been there for months or years and they really will NOW TAKE TOO MUCH TIME to complete due to our own procrastination. I have an idea! Why don’t you try to start from the last thing on the list and go up to the first thing on the list? If you do the item that you hate to even think about first, you will get such a huge rush from it and you will have the energy to do that next item right above it. Come on, if you have never done this before, what harm can it do? If it doesn’t work, I give you full permission to go back to the way you did things before.
I was recently a witness to this phrase over the 2008 holidays. I must have heard the phrase just once too often, and I challenged the person who said it. Here’s what I did. I said, “…are you game to run a little experiment?…” The person said “OK”. So I told them to say the phrase again. Then I asked them, “…exactly how much time do you think it will actually take to do XYZ?” The person had no idea. So I said: “…OK you start and I will time you”. “GO!” How long do you think this item took? I know you don’t know what it is, it doesn’t matter. How long? Less than 2 minutes. It took less than 120 seconds and that was considered too much time.
Are we really so busy that we “really can’t take the time” or is it that “we are just lazy and do not want to be bothered”. We can all take time to do what we want to do. We love to draw attention to how “Busy” we think we are. These are all conscientious choices my friend. You and only you do the choosing. It is not your kids, it is not your spouse, it is not your boss, it is YOU.
Next time before you blurt out these words, stop and think about what you are putting out there for those around to see and hear. If you truly do not have the time or cannot take advantage of something a simple “NO” with suffice. If you can do the thing whatever it is, then simply give a smile and tell them when you will do whatever. We are a society embroiled in “Drama”. More on that next time.