Not too long ago, the following occurred somewhere on the planet…
Jack and Jill were having dinner with Jane the night before they were leaving for a vacation to visit family.
Jill said to Jack, “We should visit John while we’re away.”
To which Jack adamantly replied “I say that every year and when we are there, you say no.”
Jill: “Are you blaming me? We never have the time.”
To which Jane said, “You should take the time…” And then the room went silent.
So much happening beneath the surface just from these few sentences and since I’m not Jack or Jill, I can only speculate what thoughts and emotions were going through their minds and bodies as a result of that exchange. But the bottom-line question I asked myself was this: Do either Jack or Jill really want to visit John, or deep down, do they really feel that they are obligated to do so?
We don’t find time for things. Extra time is not hiding in a closet somewhere and it doesn’t suddenly appear when we wave a magic wand. And I don’t believe we make time since all the time we will ever have already exists (so to speak). As Harvey MacKay said of time, “You can’t own it, but you can use it. You can’t keep it, but you can spend it.” In fact, we are always spending time, whether we like it or not. Therefore, we must take or use time for the things we care about by putting them into our schedule and doing them. If we care about our health, we exercise regularly and prepare and eat healthy food. If we love to read, we read daily, if we have hobbies we love, we put them into our calendar. And we make it a priority to see or at least speak to the people we care about. Should Jack and Jill visit John? I would say only if they really want to. Otherwise, I would suggest that they spend their time doing what truly matters most to them. Because as Ben Franklin said, “You may delay, but time will not.”