Have you ever stopped to think about what your relationship with time is?
All of us have a “time perspective” or viewpoint that can either help us or hurt us when left unchecked. We all know someone who seems to be trapped in their past or their future, and we can easily see in others how this viewpoint can be limiting. Have you ever checked in with yourself to acknowledge how you utilize your relationship with time?
Here are 5 major “time types” to consider…
- Past-negative: You focus on negative personal experiences that continue to have power to upset you, leading to feelings of bitterness and regret.
- Past-positive : You have a nostalgic view of the past, and usually are in close contact with your family. You tend to have happy relationships, but the downside is a more cautious, “better safe than sorry” viewpoint which may hold you back.
- Present-hedonistic: You are dominated by pleasure-seeking impulses, and are reluctant to postpone feeling good for the sake of greater gain later. Challenged by “shiny object syndrome” and/or the need for instant gratification. You are popular but tend to have a less healthy lifestyle and take more risks.
- Present-fatalistic:. You aren’t enjoying the present and feel trapped in it, unable to change the inevitability of the future. This sense of powerlessness can lead to anxiety, depression and risk-taking.
- Future-focused : You are ambitious, focused on goals, and big on making ‘to do’ lists. You may feel a nagging sense of urgency that creates stress for yourself and those around you. Your investment in the future can come at the cost of close relationships and recreation time.
All five types come into play in our lives at some point, but there are probably one or two perspectives in which you are more aligned with. Culture and our childhood can have a major influence on how we view time.
Bring awareness to your time perspective so you can develop a more flexible, healthier approach to living by consciously shifting your relationship with time.
The aim here is to find a perspective that supports your essential psychological needs and deeply held values. Balance and inner peace comes from making positive use of the past, finding healthy ways to relish the present, and routinely making plans for positive steps into the vision you hold for your life.