How Do You Use Your Time?
Greg Chertok, M.Ed., CC-AASP
Imagine there is a bank which credits your checking account with $86,400 each morning. Every evening when you lie down to sleep, it deletes whatever part of that amount you had failed to use during the day. The sole variable: you don’t know when the bank will stop this process. So, what would you do?
Likely, you would find a way to spend it.
In theory, we all have such a bank, called “time.” Every morning, you are credited with 86,400 seconds. Every night you have to write off as a loss whatever you failed to invest toward a good purpose. This account will not carry a balance over, either.
Consider this anecdote as a reminder that each day is a new account opened for you. If you fail to use the day’s deposits, the loss is yours. There is no going back; you must live on what you’ve got today.
Time is a wonderful gift. The most mentally tough athletes take advantage of every moment they have in all aspects of our lives.
Pose the question to yourself: do you use your time wisely? If not, how could you spend it more wisely? By dedicating more time to personal health and wellness, investing in others and in your relationships, in educational development?
Following is a depiction of the type of devotion to “using one’s time wisely” through a beautiful quote, credited to Hall of Fame baseball pitcher Tom Seaver. Consider the sacrifices he’s (happily) willing to make in order to make himself better. Realistically, not every athlete will adopt this philosophy, but for those with lofty goals, it’s really the only option:
“Pitching is what makes me happy. I’ve devoted myself to it, I live my life around the four days between starts. It determines what I eat, when I go to bed, what I do when I’m awake. It determines how I spend my life when I’m not pitching.”
“If it means I have to come to Florida and can’t get tanned because I might get a burn that would keep me from throwing, then I never go shirtless in the sun. If it means I have to pet dogs with my left hand, then I do that.”
“If it means in the winter I eat cottage cheese instead of chocolate chip cookies in order to keep my weight down, then I eat cottage cheese. I might want those cookies but I won’t ever eat them. That might bother some people but it doesn’t bother me. I enjoy the cottage cheese. I enjoy it more than I would those cookies because I know it will help me do what makes me happy.”
“I’ve made up my mind what I want to do. I’m happy when I pitch well so I only do things that help me be happy. What motivates me is to be the best I possibly can day after day, year after year.” ~Tom Seaver
How you choose to use your time is completely within the power of your control. Use it wisely.