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Spending Time

Spending Time

Sentinel Digital DeskBy : Sentinel Digital Desk

  |  29 Oct 2018 2:38 AM GMT

ArunavBarua

Have you ever been asked; “How do you spend your time?” I am almost sure that somewhere, in some form, in some language, you have! We usually go through a lot of options before we answer the question. The question itself is a very general in its nature and doesn’t flummox us into the tortures that other questions do. For Ex, if you had been asked; “How do you spend your money?” We would have been left in ties thinking and rethinking our options. We would probably take a piece of paper and write down what in other words can be called an ‘Income and Expenditure’ account where we would list all our sources of income, negligent as they may be; and all our expenditure, heavy as it could turn out to be. What I have in mind here, is that if the question is reversed, we are caught at tenterhooks and are unable to answer to the point where we actually need paper or some device to answer the question; “How do you spend your money?” We don’t think much and just ramble out general, average answers to the other question, the question we are discussing today; “How do you spend your time?”

I have been asked and have asked the first question and like the average person I have rambled answers that range from, “I read a lot” to “I write in my free time” and others like; “I watch a lot of television”, “I watch every movie that comes to town”, “I go to school” when school-going was what we did and which turned to “I go to college” Now, the answer could very easily be, “I go to work” or, “I spend most of my time in the office.” One staple answer which has been tried and tested through time and which leaves the questioner without any come-backs is, “I just don’t have time!”. Period.

Now for the sake of our discussion, let me change the question slightly with the one we were asked later, “How do you spend your money?” Before the answers though, the questions themselves assume something that is not very obvious. For the sake of brevity, let me highlight that part; “How do YOU spend YOUR time? Here, two assumptions are made; One, that the time I spend is mine and that I spend MY time. In the case of money, it would be; “How do YOU spend YOUR money? Here, I would be spending money that would rightfully be mine, money that I have earned, money that has been given to me, money that I have saved up and the money that I have accumulated through honest means. We are not talking of a very obvious fact that might have fallen under your purview. We are not talking of money that you have acquired through dishonest means, money that you have swindled, money that you have stolen, money that belongs to the public! Yes, it is a long story, if we count the number of times people spend money that has been earned through fraudulent means and which they call theirs.

The question though is, Can I spend someone else’s time? Can I spend my friends time? Can I do a favour to a friend who is in the hospital and volunteer to take his bed in the ICU? You see, the thing very rightfully ours which has been given to us without question and which we all have is time. Your time, time that is rightfully yours, to spend as you will. Time cannot be stolen and it cannot be swindled. To choose to spend time wisely has been every teacher’s answer to a content life. The best part of being human is that man is a social animal. He/She can share time. We can choose to spend it with the people who matter most in our lives. As humans we have a bank account with as many minutes as the longevity of our lives. Yet, we find ourselves spending time in doing things that do not add value to those minutes. We choose to ignore a substantial quantity of our time in frivolity, “How many times do you meet your parents in a year?” That question appals me because the ideal would be every day. Modern living and standards of life has brought us to question the very norms of how we spend time. Spending time with parents is so uncool isn’t it? Stop for a moment and think of the bank of time. They have accounts too and one day they would have drawn out all their minutes. Children come next. Close friends and relatives, the list goes on.

What needs to be looked at is that as thinking beings, we have all been given free bank accounts. No, this is not some public welfare scheme where we have bank accounts, but time. Till that moment we leave...we are given time and it is us who plan and choose how we spend our accounts.

I told you didn’t I, that I have been asked this question a lot of times? One answer would be; “Well I pen down words on the human condition, sometimes...”

Feedback: arunav_barua@yahoo.com

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