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We’ve all heard that “time is money.” Challenged to give a brief talk on time management recently, I looked up the Barnes & Noble website to discover the number of titles on the topic: 6,751. That’s amazing, because I have come realize that, contrary to popular opinion, time cannot be managed.

Can we stretch it, save it for a rainy day or push a couple of hours from today into tomorrow? Sure, we can delegate some of our tasks, let the phone ring, the emails accumulate and people wait to see us, but do these strategies rise to time management?

A business coach awhile back recommended the efficiency benefits of bundling similar activities (like paying bills or responding to phone messages) and doing them all at once. Certainly there is wisdom in avoiding interruptions. However, it seems clear that, for most of us, all we can control when it comes to time is our priorities.

What’s most important for your career? Are you setting goals and making progress? If not, why not? Who will do that for you? What are you putting off today that may be critical tomorrow? We all have 24 hours in the day and 60 minutes in an hour. Some of us will achieve greatness. Some of us will regret that we’ve spent too much time on unimportant things and haven’t made the most of opportunity.

Ellie Vargo, MRW, CCMC