March 15, 2013

Hurry Up and Wait

This guy from the military used to joke that they were always being told to hurry up only to find that once they got to their destination, they had to sit around and wait--he called this "Hurry up and wait!"

It's a paradox of our times that we are constantly in a hurry to get to work, have our meetings, get our work done, get home, and a million and one other things. PTA meeting or baseball practice anyone? 

From fast food to information at the speed of light, it's like we know we are up against the clock and no matter how fast we go it's not fast enough. 

Yet, it is exactly in rushing from thing to thing and to get things done that we really miss the point--to savor every moment. 

I think the saying take time to smell the roses is very important. And someday if you don't, you will look back and wonder where did all the time go and why was it so--fast and--miserable.

The Wall Street Journal (14 March 2013) has a book review today on "The Slow Fix" by Carl Honore.

Honore says we have a "cultural addiction to speed" and he advises that we take more time to enjoy life--our work, our relationships, our interests, and I would add our spirituality.

It's funny but in the book review, it mentions how a Viennese priest admits that he even prays to fast. And I have to chuckle at that because I too remember from my childhood, so many synagogue services, where speed praying and prayer by rote took the joy and meaning away the true connection I wanted to be building with my maker. 

Even in a work setting, often everything seems like a #1 priority and there is more to do than there are hours in the day or people to do it.

While working quickly and efficiently is desirable, when people are overworked and overwhelmed that is how costly mistakes happen and people get burned out. 

In all aspects of our lives, we need to make good progress, but at the same time, ensure that our lives are filled with meaning that you can only get by paying attention to each and every wonderful moment. ;-)

(Source Photo: here with attribution to Jayme Frye)


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