That’s what my yoga teacher said as we started our class, but I think it applies to everything.

Don’t squander the hours I have for yoga, by letting myself wander off my mat and out of the studio. Don’t squander the hours I have for my work or my writing, by allowing myself to become distracted by other tasks and responsibilities. Don’t squander the hours I have for pleasure and enjoyment, by feeling guilty when I take time for a walk with a friend. I want to actively engage in whatever I’m doing and make the most of the time and my effort – even if my effort is simply slowing down and smelling the roses.

When my daughter was in eighth grade (obviously many, many years ago), she used to worry that she was “wasting time” whenever she was doing something that wasn’t uber-productive. (I don’t know where she got that one!) Her teacher told her that there was no such thing as “wasting time,” only “spending time.” As long as she wasn’t going mindlessly through her day – or even if she was, but just accepted that she was and chose not too feel guilty about it – she couldn’t “waste time.” If she was intentional, even reading junk mail would be a way to spend time. If that was her choice, that was fine.

She has “spent time” for years now, and goes out of her way to not squander her hours. Don’t get me wrong, she can spend a day as easily as the next teenager on Facebook or Tumblr or watching TV shows on Netflix, but she almost always does so as an active choice. She decides to spend her time on those things, or something else, and enjoys herself. And keeps the guilt at bay.

I too am learning to spend my time and not squander my hours. I can choose to be in each moment and stay in the moment and put my whole being into the moment and enjoy the moment. I can choose to put my full effort and attention into whatever is right in front of me, to give it all of me, and then move on. I can choose to focus myself to get as much out of my life, my day, and my hours as possible.

I can choose not to squander my hours.

I’d love to hear your thoughts, and please share this post with others if it resonates with you!

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