We Can’t Talk About Time Management Without Talking About Death

It is our emotional energy that determines our awareness of time. We have more control over it than we realize.

One of the most common refrains from time management and productivity experts I hear is that time is something that:

  1. Exists outside of us
  2. Is out of our control.

This is not true.

Our awareness of time is directly linked to our awareness of life and death, and the resulting emotions we experience around both phenomenon.

Let’s take two different scenarios spanning fifteen minutes each.

In the first one you’re at the dentist for a root canal appointment. You’re there fifteen minutes early and wait. You’re not looking forward to this, you’re restless, agitated, maybe even a little fearful of the procedure. You remember when your mother had hers, she came home sedated and miserable. It took her a few days to eat solids again. She was in so much pain. You worry that you might catch an infection between the temporary and permanent filling.

After an excruciating wait, you’re beckoned into the dentist chair.

In the second one, you’re meeting your best friend from college for dinner. You two stay in touch over the phone but you haven’t seen her since her baby shower and there’s so much to catch up on. When you finally meet her, you immediately and excitedly start catching up, grateful, excited, fully present and fully connected to this beautiful soul. The server shows up fifteen minutes later and you haven’t even looked at the menu.

After a delightful catch-up, you decide it’s time to order some food.

In the first scenario, the feelings present are: anxiety, boredom, fear.

In the second they are love, connection, joy.

It’s the same period of time but our emotional make-up during them decides whether this time drags or moves quickly.

The first is closer to death and the second, closer to life.

We experience this constriction and expansion of time across all life experiences.

The rock climber who is one with the rock and wind and the tips of her fingers searching for the next hook doesn’t know how much time she has spent experiencing this oneness. 30 seconds or 3 hours? She also doesn’t care. She’s focused on being present, alive and ‘in the zone’.

Meditations and orgasms give us the same experience where time seemingly stops but the actual experience isn’t of time stopping. It is of timeLESSness. Time ceases to exist.

The closer we are to life, creativity, love — aligned with the natural flow of life energy — time stops being consequential.

The closer we are to death, boredom, fear — disconnected from our true nature — time begins to constrict.

Our energy has complete control over time. We can shape and bend it.

This realization is the birthplace of true freedom.