Change Your Mind Change Your Time

Normal human mind and thought processesThe normal human mind is only capable of experiencing one thought at a time.

If you think about the past or the future, your attention is diverted from what you are focussing on at any one time.

As our mind is prone to wander, this tends to make us naturally inefficient. With a constant barrage of both internal and external interruptions, it is not surprising that some people’s efficiency can be as low as 10%.

One of the benefits to recognising a problem is that we can begin to find a solution. When I first started meditating, I noticed very quickly that I was much more efficient on days when I treated myself to 10 minutes of Me Time. If I didn’t get around to meditating, some days I would be pushing water up a temporal hill.

  • What I learned was that the practice of mindfulness meditation didn’t so much make the inner chatter and distractions go away but it made it easier to deal with them. When we meditate daily, it becomes easier to remain in the meditative state through the day. This doesn’t necessarily mean we have no thoughts at all but we forge a new relationship with our thoughts.
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  • I discovered that it was an urban myth that the left brain was logical and the right brain creative. A more accurate model was that the left brain sat inside space and time, focusing on detail, while the right brain dealt with the Big Picture and sat everywhere and ‘everywhen’ else.
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  • I came across the art of Mind Mapping and learned how it induces the Whole Brain State, where left and right brains work in harmony. I learned this state can also be induced by some yogic breathing techniques. When we get in this state, time seems to stretch so tasks get done in the time we allocate to them. I called it EMT – or Extended Me Time.
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  • What’s more, when in the EMT state, we emit less thought forms so people external to us don’t pick them up and think to bother us. We create an Interruption Barrier.
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  • I learned that the source of procrastination were thought forms that mainly emanated in our lower mind centres. If I became a busy fool, creatively getting on with everything else other that the task in hand, it was because a fear was in operation. Occasionally, it was also because my gut mind ‘knew’ there was a better way, or more optimal time, to carry out the task. A quiet mind allowed me to tune in to this source of intuition – or inner-tuition – and to acknowledge the fear but to do it anyway!
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  • I learned too that neuroscientists had discovered that the gut mind operates ahead of time and this is a possible source of precognition. This I called IMT – or Inner Mind Time.
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  • I started to research the nature of light bulb and aha moments. These flashes of inspiration, that arrive in ‘no time at all’, are massive time savers and can be accessed on demand while in the meditative state. They come from inside space and outside time. When we experience one, we have entered OMT – or Outer Mind Time – and we awaken our prescient ability.
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  • After a while, these practical benefits become second nature and another amazing benefit emerges. With a quieter mind, we become better able to spot serendipities, coincidences and opportunities. They were probably there all along but a busy mind meant we missed them. With reduced fear and more focus, external events soon arrive Just in Time and we begin to live a charmed and magical existence.

Before I found myself immersed into the world of mindfulness and meditation, I was always quite good making the complexities of high technology understandable by technophobes. I have applied the same mindset into what I call timefulness and have created an accessible 8 week self-study course, with 21 day meditation re-treat bonus, that will change your relationship with time. I am also teaching it live inside businesses and teaching teachers how to teach it.

If you want more time in your days and weeks, check out Mindfulness-based Time Management.

mindfulness-based time management

Who’s ‘Watching’ Over You ?

Who’s ‘Watching’ Over You ?

Someone is watching over you

watch [verb] : to observe, to keep a look out, to view
watch [noun] : a timepiece, a chronometer (worn on the wrist or carried in a pocket)

From when we are born until we leave the planet, time is superimposed upon us and someone or other seems to be ‘watching over you’.

We are indoctrinated with the notion of time from birth. Babies have times for feeding, changing, and bathing. Timetables regulate our school lessons. School-time all too quickly morphs into the nine to five of work-time. We intersperse our days with breakfast times, break times, lunch times, tea times, and supper times. Commuters just have to catch that train, right on time, so they can ‘clock in’ and ‘clock out’ at the end of their working day.

We have a bedtime and, before we know it, it’s time to get up again. Note that between these two times, when we are sleeping and dreaming, time takes on a different and ethereal quality. If you ever end up awake in the small hours, however, time can seem to stretch to eternity.

Our language, too, is littered with temporal references:

  • ‘Just a minute.’
  • ‘Give me a second.’
  • ‘Cometh the hour, cometh the man.’
  • ‘Another day, another dollar.’
  • ‘That is so last season.’
  • ‘Holding back the years.’

Stop the World, I Want to Get Off

It seems that time is imposed upon us from birth right through to death, and that we cannot escape either its forward arrow or its grip. Yet, go back just 200 years or so, and nobody wore a watch. So this obsession with time is actually quite recent. In our so-called modern society, what is making this somewhat worse is that the world is permanently ‘switched on’. Before we had electric light, people snuffed out candles and went to sleep when it got dark.

The key to taking time back under our control lies in ‘watching’ ourselves internally. Firstly, take notice how the speed of time seems to vary depending on what we are doing and thinking. A busy weekend with friends seems to zoom by. An interminable wait in a doctor’s surgery seems to drag out forever. When we travel somewhere new, it seems to take longer than the journey back or the return trip. Secondly, reflect on days where you got lots done and on those days where you where pushing water up a temporal hill. Notice how you felt about those days before, during and after.

Synchronising with EMT

The passage of time is subjective and herein lies the clues on how we can control it, as opposed to it controlling us. The practice of mindfulness meditation is what opens the door to a new way of being that I call timefulness. Taking 10 minutes of ‘me time’ out each day is all that’s needed to slow time down and to get more done with less of it. With just a few days practice, we can enter Extended Me Time, or EMT. This is a luxurious state to be in where we become time lords, and of course time ladies.

When we sync with EMT, here’s what happens:

  • We get our creative tasks done, in what seems like ‘no time at all’
  • Interruptions are minimised
  • External events seem to happen ‘just in time’
  • Our stress levels reduce whilst our productivity increases
  • People want to learn our secret

p.s. I haven’t worn a watch for years and am rarely late 🙂

If you’d like to know more about how to manage the passage of time, as opposed it it managing you, get a copy of my new book Managing Time Mindfully. It comes with free guided meditations to give you the luxury of ‘me time’.

Managing Time Mindfully

Related Posts

Switching to EMT
A Synthesis of Time
My Magical Week
Another day, another dollar

Switching to EMT

Switching to EMT

Extended Me Time – EMT

Entering Extended Me Time EMT

People of the world work to all sorts of different times standards. For some of the year, the UK is on GMT, at other times it shifts by an hour to BST. I interview guests for the Zone Show podcast on AEST, EDT, PST. The five time zones of China are harmonised, for simplicity, into one with the whole territory falling under Beijing Time, or CST.

International travellers sometimes don’t know what day it is, with their body clocks jumbled by the shifting of hours!

I’d like to propose a new common and simpler time standard that all humans switch to called EMT.

EMT stands for Extended Me Time. It is the ’time zone’ we switch to when time elongates and we get more done in less time. It is a magical and creative space where we are both ’in the zone’, while also ’zoning out’.

We can enter EMT simply by beginning each and every day with 10 or 20 minutes of ’me time’ in meditation. This is far from a waste of time. I discovered in my mid-40s that the days I took this time out when so much smoother and I got so much more done. There are also many benefits to our health and wellbeing such that it is thought every minute we spend meditating gets added to our life expectancy. If true, it’s a kind of madness not to meditate.

Throughout the day, and especially while working on creative tasks, with a little practice it becomes then possible to enter the meditative state with your eyes open. We truly enter EMT when we do this as time elongates. Simply put, we begin to control the speed at which time passes by and we get more done in less time.

There is more magic to unfold when we live in EMT. We begin to tap into aha moments on demand where bright ideas that change our world arrive in less than a second. They come from ’inside time’ and ’outside space’.

The regular practice of meditation, and adoption of EMT, also makes us luckier. We begin to notice serendipities that might otherwise slip by. People and events start turn up just at the perfect time. This of course all saves bags of time.

If you’d like to enter EMT and start meditating then I get the free Insight Timer app and I have uploaded a number of free meditations to help you get into EMT.

Get Insight Timer and access to my meditations here

If you’d like to know more about how to manage the passage of time, as opposed it it managing you, get a copy of my new book Managing Time Mindfully.

Managing Time Mindfully

Start Managing Your Time Mindfully

Related Posts

A Synthesis of Time
Five Time Management Hacks
My Magical Week