I think it is important to live with some urgency and make the most of the time we have. But there are three separate questions that typically get mixed together:
- Is how you spend your time important?
- Can time actually be wasted?
- What does it mean to use time well?
I don't want to contribute to pushing productivity for its own sake or perpetuate the idea that enjoying yourself without selling your soul to some corporation is a waste.
So here are a few positions to consider, ripped straight from my notebook.
Here's one from Charles Darwin:
"A man who dares to waste one hour of time has not discovered the value of life."
And another from Derek Sivers:
“Don’t waste a single minute. Life can be long if you use time wisely. But wasting time brings death quicker. Time is the only thing that can’t be replaced.”
And one of my favourite quotes from Seneca:
“Putting things off is the biggest waste of life: it snatches away each day as it comes, and denies us the present by promising the future. The greatest obstacle to living is expectancy, which hangs upon tomorrow and loses today. You are arranging what lies in Fortune’s control, and abandoning what lies in yours. What are you looking at? To what goal are you straining? The whole future lies in uncertainty: live immediately.” – Seneca. On The Shortness of Life
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