Valuing time and attention.

First published March 14, 2013

Who manages attention well?

I was talking about time and attention management to people preparing to pastor. After describing some tools, I asked them to talk about the difference between time management and attention management.  We agreed that both are valuable, but when we improve our attention management, we will have a clearer standard for time management.

I asked what I thought was a simple question: Who is the person you know who is best at maintaining focus on the right things? Have you ever asked them how they do it?

Only one could identify anyone. No one had ever asked the question.

I’m going to ask you: Who is the person you know who is best at maintaining focus on the right things? 

Let us know below. When you ask them how they do it, let us know.

What do you have time for?

“I don’t have time for that” can be a powerful time management tool. Somewhere close by must be another tool, an affirmation. “This is what I have time for.”

As I write these words, I have a list of options. Projects that need my attention. People that need my answers. What do I have time for? The options can be paralyzing.

At this very moment, I am saying “This post is what I have time for.” When I am sitting on the sofa with Nancy and Hope watching Episodes IV, V, and VI of “Star Wars” I am saying “This family is what I have time for.”

Buried in that statement is a play on words. It’s not just “What do you have time for” as a comment on the available quantity: How much time do I have available. It is also a statement about why I have time at all: For what reason do I have time. 

So, what do you have time for?

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About Jon Swanson

Social media chaplain. Author of "Lent For Non-Lent People" and "A Great Work: A Conversation With Nehemiah For People (Who Want To Be) Doing Great Works." Writer of 300wordsaday.com. I help people understand. Understand some of the Bible. Understand what Lent can be about. Understand what it means to follow.

One thought on “Valuing time and attention.

  1. Are you talking of prioritizing the list or pruning out some things entirely so as to have a manageable, realistic amount?
    Thanks for the challenges,

    Like

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