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Last night, many of us in the United States turned the hands of time ahead one hour as we are entering the period identified as Daylight Savings Time.  Our ability to change time prompts a few questions for me, some mundane and some a bit more philosophical.  But, to stay grounded I will refrain, for this post, from discussing the abstract philosophical notions of time.  Rather, I would like to reflect on this day in two specific ways, namely, how do we take advantage of our "extra hour" of daylight, and, what does time mean in our own lives.

I am certain many of us have had life experiences for which we have wished we could either turn back time or move time forward to change particular life events.  There are times that we wish we could have back to cherish again, to say something different, do something different, or to have never had happen in the first place.  But, regardless of our ability to change clocks, we do not yet have the ability to go back in time.  Therefore we struggle with our personal feelings of resentment, disappointment, anger, sorrow, etc.

But, all is not lost.  Even though we cannot go back in time to change the event, we still can change our current feelings about the event.  In our reflection about past events, what can we learn from them?  What steps can we take to avoid a future repeat?  Do we have the opportunity to "make peace" with those from our past?  If so, do it now.  We aren't able to change the event from the past, but we can change our response and thoughts now, in the present moment.  We do not live in the past nor should we dwell there. But the past provides us tools for us to learn and to grow in the present moment. Wisely use the tools your past provides you. What you do today becomes your past tomorrow.

So, what do I do with the time I have been given? Here are some of my thoughts:

  • Sleep.  Rest is vital for a healthy mind, soul and body.
  • Spend an hour in reflection on your past to use as a guide as you plan your future.
  • Use the time for reflective journaling.
  • Write to a friend or family member whom you have not recently contacted.
  • Do something you typically don't have time to do, like taking a walk, observing nature, reading a book.
  • Spend quality time with the people closest to you.

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