A Task Takes as Much Time As It Takes

Doesn’t that title statement look obvious? And yet, how many times have you refused to accept it?

Sometimes it seems as if we are wasting our time, because we want results quickly. Instead, we are pouring an inordinate number of hours into a task we somehow decided should take an hour at the most. The time frame we assigned for completion was completely arbitrary, and unrealistic, but we beat ourselves up anyway.

A task takes as much time as it takes, which is the correct amount of time for what we needed to learn, the abilities we brought to it,  and the results we were seeking. Deciding we are too slow only depletes our energy (frustration is expensive, energetically) and increases the length of time required.

We tend to see ourselves in a certain light, but only prove that we are in the dark about ourselves when reality proves otherwise. If we can accept our own pace, and flow naturally with our present abilities, we can forgive ourselves for not being as fast as we liked to think we were.

A Certain Light

Until you value yourself, you won’t value your time. Until you value your time, you will not do anything with it.
…………..~ M. Scott Peck

When in doubt, take more time.
…………..John Zimmerman

You must have been warned against letting the golden hours slip by; but some of them are golden only because we let them slip by.
…………..~James M. Barrie

About CarolWiebe

Art entices, inspires, and delights me. Art is a vehicle for laughter, tears, wonder, enlightenment--taking me on a constant path of discovery. You can't say that about housework (except, perhaps, for the crying part).
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7 Responses to A Task Takes as Much Time As It Takes

  1. Pingback: Taking My Own Words to Heart | Carol Wiebe Wonders Out Loud

  2. Kelly-Ann Callaghan says:

    This post I completely agree with. I feel like I’m doing this to myself all the time. When I go home I’ll write down the first quote and allow myself more time. :)
    It was nice to meet you today, some one with the same values. A rare occasion.
    Come back to my Starbucks home anytime :)

    • Carol Wiebe says:

      Kelly-Ann, it was such a pleasure meeting you! You are an old soul, having figured things out to a greater degree than many. That was obvious, speaking to you. And thank you, I expect to see you again at your Starbucks home!

  3. Nicolas says:

    In a rational world I agree with you. However, I also tend to think that psychology impacts working time and organization the other way around, leading people to take just as much time as they have to complete a task… In other words, the more time you have to complete a task, the more time it tends to require to perform it.

    • CarolWiebe says:

      There are so many factors that play into that, don’t you think, Nicolas? Estimates need to be made for the time needed to complete a job, which are built into the proposal or plan. If you take less time to complete it, your manager may doubt your abilities to estimate, think you’re not doing enough, or suspect you were trying to get more credit than you deserved for the time you were willing to give to the project. Office politics often dictate that you spend as much time as you are given, or everyone else will look bad. It all gets pretty complex, and tricky to navigate through.

      I am talking about doing art for one’s own enrichment and growth. There are a lot of things you just can’t rush, or pretend you know when you haven’t put in enough working time to have it “in your bones.”

      Thank you so much for your reply. I always enjoy a stimulating response!

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