After a recent purchase, I was told I had 14 days to return the product for a refund. The ability to get a refund is nice. If you decide things weren’t to your liking, you can take it back. Getting a refund for purchases is a nice option when it comes to spending financial resources, however, there are two more important resources that we spend for which there is no refund: time and energy.
The longer I live the more conscious I am of how I spend my time and energy. Being mindful of the activity I’m presently engaged in and the physical, mental, and emotional energy required to engage in that activity. There are no returns on the expenditures of our time and energy. Therefore, time and energy are two things you don’t want to waste.
I think it’s important to have our use of time and energy mean something and result in a positive outcome. Creating a system to determine the best usage of time and energy is one of the most beneficial things any of us can do. I’ve employed a two-pronged approach to getting a grip on the use of my time and energy; This approach is mindfulness, and a System of Measurement (SoM).
It’s been said that over 90% of our actions are habitual and subconscious. The implication is that we are largely unaware of how we’re spending our time and energy. For the most part, we are running on our habitual autopilot. To change that we need to engage in a mindfulness practice. The practice involves taking notice and becoming consciously aware of how we’re spending our time and energy. As we go about our daily activities, mindfulness means paying attention to what we’re doing, why we are doing it, and how we’re feeling about it. These are expenditures of time and energy that we are normally oblivious to. Becoming aware of these factors is an important aspect of managing our time and energy. We are not accustomed to doing this, so it takes practice, which is itself an expenditure of energy; but the energy is not wasted, and in the end has positive results.
The second component of my process is establishing a System of Measurement. The SoM serves as a guidance system, or decision-making process for the usage of time and energy. My personal motto is the tool I use to determine if an expenditure of time and energy is worth it. My motto is:
I practice measuring my decisions on the expenditure of time and energy by these five elements. First, does the activity fall into one or more of these categories? If not, unless absolutely necessary, I refrain from engaging. Yes, I do fall short on occasion, it is a practice, but over time I’ve gotten pretty good at it, and find the process invaluable.
By consciously managing these valuable resources, you become far more productive while minimizing stress and avoiding burnout, both of which are detrimental to our health and wellness. I encourage you to develop a system that works for you and begin the practice. It will be time and energy well spent.