Thoughts on the Run

The march of time is unrelenting. In your twenties and early thirties, time feels less important because there is plenty of runway ahead. It is a bit like having a full roll of toilet paper. You can take comfort that you will not be caught short today.

When you have a full roll of toilet paper on the holder, each use doesn’t appear to significantly reduce the size of the roll. You may even use a little more than is necessary.

A full roll of toilet paper is the equivalent of being young. You can abuse your body and recover quickly. You don’t feel like you are using up a precious resource that will one day run out.

When you are young, you can easily overcome a heavy training session or a series of late nights. A hangover passes by lunchtime.

We have all experienced that time when you rushed into the public toilet, desperate to do your business. Just past that point of relief, you look to the toilet roll holder and find it empty. The feeling of anguish can be agonising.

Your brain snaps into problem-solving mode. You look around. Is there a roll hiding in a corner somewhere? Maybe there is one in the next stall. By now, cold sweat is running down your brow.

Image finding out that you have no more time left. That might be a little like running out of toilet paper. Only amped up by a factor of I don’t know much, but some crazy big number. I am grateful to have a fair amount of toilet paper on my roll. Nothing dramatic going on here that I am aware of.

Having past the halfway mark a while back means I am looking a little more closely at each square I use.

The same goes for my time. I am far more cautious about how I allocate my time. I am thinking of it as a non-renewable, scarce resource. There is not another roll in the stall next door. This is it.

Have you ever noticed that as the toilet roll gets smaller, it appears to run out faster? Your use doesn’t increase when there is less on the roll. It is just that each use is a bigger and bigger percentage of what is left on the roll. The circumference of the roll is less at the end of the roll; hence, it appears that the paper is being used up more quickly.

Time behaves in the same way. As you get further into the roll, each year appears to go by faster than before. As a kid, a year felt like a lifetime. Now, a year feels like a flash in the pan. Before you know it, it is over.

So how to make better use of the remaining time? Definitely more running! Keeping up with the youngsters creates an illusion of youthfulness. I’m chasing that.

Justin Spencer-Young

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Justin Spencer-Young

Daily content creator at Fast Forward Business. Chief Valueologist. Fast Forward Business Podcast…look out for my daily podcast…a shot of value in your day