A Race Against Time

I might’ve mentioned this before, but I’m consistently amazed that on the days when I wake up early, I end up running about 10 minutes late in getting to the office.

And on days when I wake up late, I get to work on time, if not a few minutes early.

The other morning when I was driving to work (ahead of schedule since I woke up late, natch), I was thinking about this funny little phenomenon. And then I decided it’s no different than those people who maximize the bejeezus out of their life when (not to be morbid) they know they have a finite amount of time left to live.

If someone told me this Friday would be my last day on earth, I’d probably call in sick tomorrow and Thursday, then pull a couple of all-nighters so that I can finish my two screenplays and three plays. Why? Because I’d want to make the most of my time, and the clock is ticking.

The clock is ticking on mornings when I’m running late, and on mornings when I’m ahead of schedule. It ticks at the same pace. But on mornings when I seem to have ample time to get things done, I take it for granted, I slow my pace, and I put things off for another minute or two.

Then those minutes turn into ten, then fifteen, and before you know it, I’m rushing.

I hate rushing.

Ironically, when I wake up and I have to rush from the get-go, I find ways to get it all done with time to spare. The time isn’t taken for granted because I’m already operating at a deficit, and I hate being known as the late girl — exactly the way I would hate being known as the girl who passed without having completed any of my writing projects.

I guess it all comes down to priorities. Because if the clock’s ticking, you surely must be focusing on something: getting out the door on time, shooting one last basket with the hopes of tying — or maybe even winning — the game, making it onto the airplane before they close the jetway door, getting home in time to watch your favorite TV show, logging onto the computer so you can buy those concert tickets that go on sale at 10am, making it to a first date on time.

Only there’s no “if.” The clock is always ticking. Why put off till tomorrow what you can do today — especially when tomorrow isn’t guaranteed?

What are you racing toward?

Tonight I am thankful for some weekday rushing that reminded me that the clock isn’t just ticking on the way to work, but instead — like an anxious child — is calling out over and over, “Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?”

Here’s to doing what we’ve been putting off so that we can, in fact, say yes — I’m there.

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