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Can You Really Make Up For Lost Time?
by Bryan Beckstead

"Lose an hour in the morning, and you will spend all day looking for it." Richard Whately

Can you really make up for lost time? The numbers are against you on this one.

We hear people say, "I have to make up for today, I just didn't get anything done."

We have said it ourselves countless times. A day passes and we just did not get done what we wanted done or simply feel that we didn't get enough things done, period. Either way, we fall back on the crutch of saying, "I'll just have to work twice as hard tomorrow, to make up for my lack of production today."

Is that possible? Working twice as hard the next day to make up for today? If that is possible, can we work three times as hard the third day to make up for two lost days? You can see where this is going.

First of all, what the heck is "lost time" Did we lose time, or did we just not use it properly?

Time is made up of seconds, minutes, hours and days, all strung together. It's impossible to lose time. The next 5 minutes of your time will come and go, whether we use it to do anything or not. A unit of time is like an empty box; a second is a very small box, a minute is the volume of 60 small second boxes, an hour is a much larger box having the volume of 60 minute boxes and so on. Picture these boxes on a conveyor belt passing in front of you. As these boxes of time pass in front of you, you have the option of jumping in and doing something or the option of doing nothing and letting that time pass you by, NEVER to pass by again.

Time is a finite, non-renewable resource. Once it has passed you by on our conveyor belt, that specific volume of time is gone. Yes, there will be another box of time directly behind it, and another and another, but there is an end to the conveyor belt, make no mistake about that. Our discussion today is the question, "Can we really make up for lost time?" I started off using the term "lost" in this discussion because everyone would immediately be able to relate to it. The use of the word "lost" is inaccurate. It should be, "can we really make up for misused time?" I hope we are past the point of thinking we somehow lost time, as if it will mysteriously appear again. We don't lose time. We do, however, misuse it and therefore waste it.

Hopefully we are in agreement that we should be talking about trying to make up for misused time rather than lost time. Using the term misused gives us a clearer picture of the issue in front of us. Going back to our example of the boxes on the conveyor belt, if we misuse our time on Monday, waste the opportunity too use those boxes of time properly, can we some how work twice as hard on Tuesday to make up for those wasted hours on Monday?

The answer is, hypothetically yes, in reality no.

·Hypothetically Yes. For the sake of argument, you work an 8-hour day; the work that should have been done on Monday will now be scheduled into the time boxes for Tuesday. You do Monday's work on Tuesday and Tuesday's work will either have to be done in additional time boxes, extending or adding on to the work schedule for Tuesday. Unless you are prepared to add additional hours on to Tuesday, you have no opportunity to do Monday's work on Tuesday. Tuesday only has a set number of time boxes. Remember, time is finite, it's not limitless. You have to do the work of two days in one. It is possible, but deep down inside we all know the road this leads us down.

·In Reality No. This is the answer we all should be arriving at. If you start to move chunks of activities that were not accomplished or done properly to the next day, what happens to the activities that you had planned to do that day? It's a snowball effect. You MIGHT be able to squeeze two days worth of activities into one, but what happens on the 3rd and 4th and 5th days? What you get is the situation most of us find ourselves in; rushed, stressed out, unproductive, and most of all, unhappy.

I hope this has given you something to think about in regards to how you use your time. Knowing that we can't keep doubling up on the day after the day when we just couldn't get our priority activities done or failed to be as productive as we would have been if we had planned a little bit better.

REMEMBER, We only get one chance to use those boxes of time as they pass us by; we need to make the most of every moment because we don't get a second chance at that unit of time ever again.

Bryan Beckstead may be contacted at

Bryan Beckstead is the creator and developer of the Power Time System and the Power Productivity Maximizer and has been involved in the Self Improvement and Self Empowerment industries for almost 35 years. His aggressive, in-your-face approach has earned him a reputation as someone who will give you the facts without the usual sugar coating. If you are really serious about improving your quality of life, visit him at



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