As time goes by…

10 August 2010
As time goes by…

In an overgrown corner of an ancient cemetery lies a commemorative tablet on which is carved an important message for humanity: “Good Times; Bad Times; All Times; Pass Over.” In other words, throughout life the good times will tend to get worse and the bad times will tend to get better. The Danish writer Karen Blixen once wrote: “Difficult times have helped me to understand better than before how infinitely rich and beautiful life is in every way, and that so many things that one goes worrying about are of no importance whatsoever.” Nevertheless …

“If there is one thing that our modern society lacks, it’s time,” a colleague said to me on a grey Monday morning. “We are constantly running after this and that, without taking time just to live and enjoy life. Since the recent financial turmoil, it has become even worse and today you have to work twice as hard for the same result.”

Time or rather the lack of it is indeed quite a common conversational topic these days, and everybody is complaining. “Haven’t you noticed how fast time goes by, and each day is like a handful of sand slipping through my fingers without me hardly noticing it,” my colleague said sorrowfully. “I have so many things I would like to do but time simply does not permit it.”

Another colleague was also complaining. “The years just pass by unnoticed until age slaps us in the face. This morning when I woke up I could hardly recognize my face in the mirror. However, I do not have time to get old, just wiser, and the best thing is I do not feel old, although on paper I have reached quite an important age,” he said smiling.

“It isn’t it funny to notice that the notion of time is not the same around the world. In Europe most people do not want to feel old and I am one of them, whereas in other parts of the world –– people are happy to become old. Not only will they be respected for their old age and grey hair, and treated with esteem, but also it means that they are lucky to have lived so much longer than others,” he said.

“There is another funny thing too about time,” he went on. “Now I ask people whenever we are organizing meetings which time we should use – the African, the Latin American or the Swiss one…I do not know what is best, but at least if we decide on ‘one time’, I know that persons from this or that part of the world will tell you one time but perhaps turn up one or two hours later.”

Steve Jobs (the co-founder of Apple computers) once said: “Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life. Don’t be trapped by dogma –– which is living with the results of other people’s thinking. Don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice. And most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.” So on these wise words, we thank you for the valuable time you have taken reading these small thoughts, and wish you all a great day.