A holiday passed

Halloween and Thanksgiving have passed, and Christmas and New Year’s are fast approaching. While this year has been simultaneously too fast and too slow, it was only a year ago that we were thinking of what the holidays mean.

Holidays are different things to different people. Where in the past it could have been about family, eating, or even shopping, now it’s about health and how to engage with people – family or otherwise. And, yes, still about shopping. (While online sales were high, the number of Americans shopping this year was less than last year, with the average total purchases also being down.)

This year, the holidays seem about patience, and prudence, and preservation.

Give yourself time

For some of us, now is a perfect time to, well, take our time. Perhaps rather than binging another show, and even in lieu of reading (but not all day – just for a bit), listen to an album. I’m a long way from my record player, but I have albums on my computer. There’s also YouTube, where you can find just about anything.

In The Artist’s Way, this was one of the tasks in a later chapter of the book. Julia Cameron recommended doodling while you listen. Let your mind wander. Listen, relax, and consume the album from start to finish.

As the days get longer

There’s magic in the coming spring. We can sense the Earth preparing for the warming weather; the ground softening, the ice thawing, and the foliage preparing to bloom.

There are experiences that a human can lose touch with. Not many tend to a garden anymore or spend enough time in nature. It’s all work, fifty weeks a year, with hopefully two for vacation. Sometimes better, sometimes worse, but the average is about right there.

But right now, when life the Nation is facing a bit of a crisis, and nothing seems to make sense, it’s good to remember to make time. Make time for the experiences that we might miss if we just plow through the day.

Time is the commodity

“All real meaning accrued from duration.”

-Ken Burns

Most transactions now are momentary; fleeting. Real value is accrued through spending time with something. Learning, experiencing, taking time – this has how life is made worth living.

Don’t just rush through the day, checking things off a list. Spend time on them. Experience them, and feel the joy of life.


The wasting of potential through unthoughtful and unaccounted for hours in the day. Nearly anything can be a time suck if allowed to be. Some things I’ve noticed – video games, email, social media, Netflix. While none are inherently time-suckers, using them in an unmindful way will suddenly resulted in wasted hours.

When used to distract from something else, they merely sap your attention. These diversions can take many forms, but they all will waste the most precious commodity that we only have so much of – time.

Mindfully approaching your day-to-day experiences will eliminate the need for diversion, and give you control over more of your time.