Time is precious. Precious. Some of us are blessed with decades, even a century of time, in which to make mistakes, make amends, start over, live. Others aren’t so lucky and they leave us as quickly as they came.
I don’t know how long I’m destined to roam the earth, so please, don’t waste my precious life moments.
If we agree to hang out and you realise that you’re running exceptionally late or can’t make it at all, send me a short text, give me a call. You have my number. You don’t have to give me the entire story at that point, but at least let me know that I don’t have to sit at this table, alone, looking like a stray, while others judge me for having no friends. I hate nothing more than turning up at the appointed spot only to be left waiting for a no-show. I could have been using that time to write a blog post. I could have been binge watching my latest Netflix obsession. I could have been playing with my dogs. I could have been chatting up my crush. Don’t waste my time. We can’t be friends if you waste my time.
If you’re planning to visit me at home and I make the necessary arrangements, such as wearing pants, call me if your plans change. Wearing pants for long periods of time makes me cranky, and you don’t want me as a cranky friend. I take cranky to unheard of levels of anguish. Trust me on this. If our friendship means something, anything to you, let me know you can’t come by.
If you ask me out on a date and I go through the rituals of making sure that everything looks and smells good, please, for the love of humanity, call or text me when you realise that you are running late or have to reschedule altogether. I carved time out from this day, today, to look presentable for you. Do not text me the next day to explain. The next day deserves a call. I gave up some of my precious time to go out with you, don’t squander the opportunity. You probably won’t ever get the chance to see me again.
Of course, I’m not unreasonable. If you are bound and gagged in the trunk of a car, I’ll understand. I’ll be annoyed, but understanding. Just don’t make a habit of these “my life was in danger” excuses.
If you proclaim yourself to be a professional—hairdresser, plumber, handyman, gardener, nail technician, doctor—yet you repeatedly miss appointments, or fail to let your clients know that their appointments are running late, you should stop pretending that you are running a business and find a nine-to-five job where a supervisor with a big stick will ensure that you clock in and out on time. I make it my business to always be early for appointments because I respect you and I respect your other clients who’d be inconvenienced by any discourteousness on my part. It is not okay to waste my time and then still have the gall to accept your full fee. A discount and an apology might make me more inclined to use your services again.
That said, 2016 is half over. Gone. Forever. Are you guilty of wasting somebody else’s time? Are you wasting your own time? You only have this moment, right now. Make good use of it.