Do you want to know what the real time wasters are?

Stop wasting my time! This is a comment that is frequently heard and seldom reflected on. What does it mean to waste someone’s time? Does the person know they are wasting your time? What was the person doing that “wasted” your time? Is it like wasting food or wasting money? When someone tells you something that you are not interested in, does it waste your time? In a country where the average person watches more than 25 hours a week of TV, it seems preposterous that anyone could dare use a phrase like “stop wasting my time.”

We spend four hours per week watching people hitting a ball, carrying a ball, throwing a ball and bouncing a ball in games that we call sports, but we do not consider this a “waste” of our time. If sports and TV are not time wasters, then what qualifies? What wastes your time? Is this time when you are not doing anything? Whose fault is that if you have nothing to do? If we were honest, we would admit that most of us waste our own time with silly meaningless activities designed to take our mind off living and perhaps really accomplishing something. We are each experts at ways to waste time. TV, gambling, casinos, watching sports, newspapers, endless meetings, etc. are only a smattering of the myriad ways we waste our time each day.

Wasting time may be a very subjective term, since what I think is very wasteful, you might think is very useful. My ideas of what constitute a valuable use of time might fit your definition of “time wasters.” Nevertheless, we all have our own ideas of what time wasting means to us.

What if more of us started “wasting” our time on the activities that could really make a difference to the world? What would the world be like, if more of us took an interest in government, law and politics and less in TV, gambling, sports and other such time wasters? What if we spent more time in charitable activities, loving others, finding ways to bring peace to the world, building bridges and creating friendships with those in need? What if we spent 25 hours a week on creative activities instead of watching TV? Could you spend one hour less on TV this week and one hour more on peace? Where would you start? When will you start? Why not today?

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