Why Do We Worry About Time? – Book Giveaway!

We are giving away a copy of Creating Time: Using Creativity to Reinvent the Clock and Reclaim Your Life, by Marni K. Makridakis. Check out this excerpt on why we worry about time, and then leave a comment for a chance to win your own copy of this book!

An Excerpt from Creating Time by Marney Makridakis

Try this: Imagine who you would be if you didn’t worry about time. How might your life be different? I surveyed fifty-two people, and the results revealed that 90 percent felt “somewhat anxious” to “significantly anxious” about time. What’s even more startling is that these results don’t even seem all that surprising. Anxiety about time is very much a part of most of our lives. Think back to a time when you greeted a casual acquaintance and asked how he was, and he said, “Great! Things are fantastic!” It can be almost jarring when someone responds so positively. Somehow we’re more conditioned to expect to hear people complain that they are tired, or sigh that they are busy.

It’s helpful to dig deeply to figure out what is at the root of our problems with time. Why do we overschedule ourselves? Why do we want to be so busy? Why are we so consumed with time? Why does it seem so “normal” to worry about time so much? Why is it easier to be caught up in a drama about time than it is to be released from it?

In short, what is the payoff for worrying about time?

When I examine this question myself, I can recognize that the more I complain about time, the more I block my ability to accept and express love and connection. Violette Clark shared, “I suppose not having enough time, or the illusion of believing this, makes us feel important. I also realize it keeps me safe. There have been a lot of dreams that I’ve accomplished, including publishing a book, but there have been a lot of balls that I’ve dropped, too, in the name of ‘not having enough time.’ Putting myself out there more fully means more potential for rejection. Sometimes not ‘going for my dreams’ is safer.”

Similarly, artist Peggy Lynn boldly admitted that time complaints are related to ego: “The ‘I’m too busy’ implication does stroke the ego: ‘Oh, look at me — busy, busy, busy!’” A workshop participant shared that her worries about time give her an excuse and an outside source for not following her dreams. She said, “I’ve never been someone who likes to blame, but now I suddenly realize that I’ve actually been blaming time. I don’t have enough time, and so that’s why I don’t go after this dream, or that’s why I haven’t tried this or followed up on that. Then it’s not my fault. This was a big discovery for me!”

Next: what are the “payoffs” of time worry?

Here are some examples of payoffs that people might receive from worrying or complaining about time.

  • Time is a good catchall: if I can complain about being busy, then I don’t have to look at other areas in my life.
  • Worrying about time gives me something to talk about with other people.
  • Worrying about time is a convenient excuse for not following my dreams.
  • My schedule is wrapped up with my self-esteem. Being “too busy” means that I’m successful.
  • I don’t plan things that I might enjoy because it is too scary — it just feels safer to be bored.

Do any other payoffs come to mind? Which ones resonate as possibly being true for you?

Once we can identify the payoffs that we get from worrying about time, we can see them for what they are: illusions that keep us from living our true potential. Simply being aware of what we are getting from our time worries allows us to make a different choice. Choice is one of the nine ARTbundance Principles, which are building blocks to self-awareness. Making new choices is one of the best ways we can explore new layers of freedom with time. Dana Sebastian-Duncan, a trainee in the ACT program, put it nicely: “When I really think of the Principle of Choice as it relates to time, it reminds me that I have the freedom to create my life and my own ‘reality.’ My daily choices add up to my life, and that is empowering.”


Marney K. Makridakis is the author of Creating Time. She founded the Artella online community for creators of all kinds and the print magazine Artella. A popular speaker and workshop leader, she created the ARTbundance approach of self-discovery through art. She lives in Dallas, Texas. Visit her online at http://www.artellaland.com.


Excerpted from the book Creating Time: Using Creativity to Reinvent the Clock and Reclaim Your Life © 2012 by Marney Makridakis. Published with permission of New World Library.

WIN THE BOOK! Enter a comment below and you will automatically be entered to win a copy of Creating Time: Using Creativity to Reinvent the Clock and Reclaim Your Life, by Marni K. Makridakis. Winner will be announced on July 24 (winner will be notified via Care2 profile). Good luck!


Anita D.

Winner: Please email Molly at mollya@care2team.com to claim your new book. Thanks to everyone who entered!


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Kirsty B.
Kirsty B.3 years ago

This article resonates so much with me! I worry about time passing by that I don't actually enjoy the time I have. I think that this book would be very helpful in helping me turn my life around so that I can enjoy the little things in life and not be afraid to try new experiences!

Diana C.
Diana C.3 years ago

At the end of the day, there is always more to do! I look back on the day just past and wonder where all the time went. I guess I just don't get the concept of managing time--it always seems to manage me!

Annette G.
Annette G.3 years ago

Time, using it wisely, and being "on time" has been the bane of my lifetime! Could really use this book . . .

Lori P.
Lori P.3 years ago

I find I'm always happiest (and a better mom, wife, daughter, employee) when I've taken a bit of time for myself! : )

Mac C.
mac C.3 years ago

Excellent points from the book in the article--- sounds like a good book. Thank you for posting the excerpt.

Shelby P.
Shelby P.3 years ago

I'm the one who's doing GREAT! But I would LOVE to have more time, for friends, for creativity, for all of the wonderful things life has to offer ...

Bonnie R.
Bonnie R.3 years ago

Time, there never seems to be enough of it when you need it, too much of it when it passes slowly and when you want to create it can be disrupted. Time to create, paint, draw, or just mess around. This book may be just what I need lol.

Gayle B.
Gayle B.3 years ago

I am currently in the ARTbundance ACT 7 Training and, although I have only just completed week 1, I can see it is going to help me to "defrag" my life to free up more space and energy (can you tell I just defragged my computer?). I'm in the training but I do not own this book and would like to! Fingers crossed that I win.

Kay S.
Kay S.3 years ago

I've become such a fan of Marney Makradakis. While I love her insight, it's the processes she leads me through to discover my own that makes me want to spend time on her website and in this book. I bought this the day it came out.

Creating Time - good time.

Past Member
Past Member 3 years ago

I like the concept of having choice!