When we compartmentalize our time, we often find that we feel cheated. It may seem like we are spending all our time on others and have none left for ourselves.

If I thought about time as every single moment, how might my understanding of time be altered?

Then Allen said, “I have discovered a way to have a lot more time. In the past, I used to look at my time as if it were divided into several parts. One part I reserved for Joey, another part was for Sue, another part to help with Ana, another part for household work. The time left over I considered my own. I could read, write, do research, go for walks.

But now I try not to divide time into parts anymore. I consider my time with Joy and Sue as my own time. When I help Joey with his homework, I try to find ways of seeing his time as my own time. I go through his lesson with him, sharing his presence and finding ways to be interested in what we do during that time. The time for him becomes my own time. The same with Sue. The remarkable thing is that now I have unlimited time for myself!”

—from The Miracle of Mindfulness
by Thich Nhat Hanh
Beacon Press, © 1975
pp. 3-4

The Miracle of Mindfulness by Thich Nhat Hanh
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