"I've observed over the years that many people in our culture
experience not having enough time in daily life. The feelings:
frustration, anxiety, panic, pressure, stress. It's as if somebody
yelled "Fire!"-and although we could get out of the room, we don't.
This is the way we live in relationship to time, all day long
responding to the subtle message, "fire, fire, fire, fire ..."
Many cultures, however, have a completely different experience of
time. What is a moment in New Guinea, for example, where there are no
words for hours or minutes? Maybe a moment lasts all morning. But
for those of us who live in nanosecond time, a moment becomes very,
very short, and in each moment we ask how much we have gotten done.
How much did I cram into it? Was I successful in multitasking? As
one woman in a class I was working with said to me, "I have finally
figured out how to relax. When I go from my job teaching to my
consulting job and I'm driving in my car, I listen to a self-help
tape, I eat lunch on the way, I talk on my cellular phone, and I relax
at the same time."
This approach to time management simply turns up the speed on the
treadmill of our lives. I propose we evolve beyond time management to
"timeshifting"-which is different from merely "downshifting." The
practice of timeshifting recognizes that every single moment has a
particular rhythm to it, and that we have the capacity to expand or
contract an individual moment as appropriate. One way to shift what's
going on in our world is not to try to rush to do more, but to allow
ourselves to go deeper into that moment of being present. Our ability
to shift gears, to shift our rhythm to meet that moment and be present
in it, is what allows us to experience the fullness of life - to
create our life in the way we want it to be."
-- Stephan Rechtschaffen
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