“See, now is the acceptable time; see, now is the day of salvation!” – 2 Corinthians 6:2

Each one of us has been granted, by divine edict, a major time resource of 24 hours per day. Some of us may be affected by a spiritual belief system and/or by mental and physical disabilities that inhibit the way in which these 24 hours may be effectively used.

Collectively, the net effective hours available over the population of a country represents a major national people resource (brawn, brain, social, cultural and spiritual assets) which is separate and distinct from the physical, financial and natural resources of a country.

One important objective of the public and private leadership of a country should be to introduce policies and action plans to incentivize the populace so that the total net effective hours available is optimized in the best interest of the country. A natural corollary to this is the positive outcome “when the country wins, then we all win!”

The individual, through the efficient and effective management of time, holds the key to national success.

In preparation for my advent into business, nearly 40 years ago, I was exposed to “time management”. I did not know it at the time, but I can comfortably share now, that the discipline of managing that God-given 24 hours per day has had a very significant impact on my entire life. It is now one of the key performance shepherding indicators which I introduce to clients as I encourage them to unlock their human potential.

As individuals accept the challenge to manage their time, they must first of all determine the several categories of interest to them in life. Then they should budget their time (a daily average by category) apportioned across these activities to have a balanced life. Of course, this exercise would be individual specific hence there should be no attempt to prescribe an across the board formula except of course as a guide.

The six basic categories in which we should consider addressing positive affirmations of abundance are (1) physical (nutrition, sleep and exercise) – to manifest fitness, alertness, appearance and physiological balance; (2) emotional (feelings, behaviours and tolerance) – to manifest excellent relationships with family, friends and colleagues; (3) mental (education and coaching) – to manifest clarity of mind, positive thinking and maturity; (4) internal vital energy (prayer and meditation) – to manifest the finer things in life; (5) finances (income, cost containment and productivity) – to manifest financial security, a sound credit rating and social responsibility; and, for those with entrepreneurship flair, (6) business (innovation, diversification, management of business systems and shepherding) – to manifest sustainable business success and corporate social responsibility.

In my own case, my allocation was basically in three categories (physical), (mental, financial and business) and (vital energy and emotional). At my stage of life, the reality is that even though the physical time allocation category has to be maintained at approximately 33 percent to prolong a high quality of life, a greater percentage of time is spent on the vital energy and emotional component at the expense of the mental, financial and business component. These days I attempt to live in the “now” and am learning to appreciate each moment.

Recently, I read an article in another section of the press under the sobriquet “Wild Coot”, who is a contemporary of mine. He shared a story: “A youth called me in sorrowful tears the other day. Wild Coot, you think it is fair for all those fellows who have worked already for nearly 40 years in a job to stay in that job and not make room for us young people? We need to get a chance man. They had their time and should have made good use of it. We even think that they should go before 60”.

This to be contrasted with the sentiments of a recent story in the Huffington Post where the message is “Eighty is the new sixty”.

Here is my suggestion for a win-win solution:

Instead of younger people making a case for the retirement age to be lowered to make way for a job for them, should they not look after their own destiny by becoming entrepreneurs? There are many opportunities out here. If the young people do not think of ideas and innovations on their own, there is a CBET tool called a High Impact Growth Strategy (HIGS) workshop which has been tested throughout the region and can deliver new ideas over a period of two days by assembling a diversity of brains to brainstorm under a structured process to effect the result.

What is a main requirement for youth with ideas? Shepherding, of course.

What is a main ingredient of the shepherding process? Experience of course.

One competitive advantage that the retired persons have is experience. Persons reaching retirement age, who are not yet “tired”, should they not look after their own destiny by becoming shepherds?

There you have a win-win situation that allows us to use our 24 hours per day to good effect and for the benefit of the nation provided that the leaders provide a user friendly enabling environment. The CBET Shepherding Model is the solution – Ideas – Shepherding – Money. Ideas, no problem. Shepherding, “training of Shepherds” programme. The major missing ingredient is money and we know that shepherding mitigates the risk of failure which creates an environment for the investors to invest.

Let us focus on the present moment and seek blessings, guidance and inspiration from God and watch the future unfold for us and all around us. Let us play our part and unlock our human potential by managing those God-given time resources to the best of our ability.

(Dr. Basil Springer GCM is Change-Engine Consultant, Caribbean Business Enterprise Trust Inc. – CBET. His columns may be found at www.cbetmodel.org and www.nothingbeatsbusiness.com.)