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Tempus fugit

This year, Halloween snuck up on me because I hadn’t spent the entire month of October wondering how to design and construct costumes out of cardboard, duct tape, and tempera paint. With four boys in the house, the costumes always seemed robot or superhero oriented.

In addition, my three girls have always been planners and creators and I rarely had to worry about what they were wearing. They just did it and showed up with pillowcase in hand eager to hit the better neighborhoods for the full-sized candy bars.

And yes, if you did the math, you would realize my wife and I have seven children. Halloween used to be an epic night in the Schmidt household. So, why no costumes this year?

Mrs. Schmidt and I have what we could call a “middle-aged” family. Most of our children would not be considered trick-or-treat aged, even though several are still in school. Of the youngest two, neither seemed interested in squeezing one more year in. Besides, why beg for candy when their parents always had leftover treats? The warehouse store is our favorite place, and we tend to over-buy, but that is a different story.

So, Halloween 2022 is in the history books, and we are in the month of November. Yes, November… Soon we will be setting our tables for Thanksgiving and decorating our homes for the holidays. I feel like school just started last week and I missed the last two months.

The ancient Roman poet Virgil once wrote, “Fugit inreparabile tempus.” – literally translated it means "it escapes, irretrievable time." However, most of the time we see it as tempus fugit, time flies. That has certainly been the case for me since August.

At certain points in our lives, we might feel time is moving slowly. Perhaps it is more so when we are young and are anticipating certain monumental events. As a boy I remember it seemed like I waited FOREVER for my next birthday, or summer vacation.

But as adults, it seems like there is never enough time to accomplish all we need to do. We now plan the birthday parties and trips for summer vacation. Is that why we feel like time flies? Is it because we are the ones who have the responsibility to get things done for our families?

Perhaps. But I would also suggest something else. Our business lives have become more complex and demanding on top of personal responsibilities.

All of us are busier than ever and I know many of us are now double, and even triple booked with online appointments. At the risk of sounding like Dana Carvey’s Grumpy Old Man character from Saturday Night Live, “I don’t like things the way they are now compared to the way they used to be.”

Perhaps we are here because we learned to multitask during the online meeting days of COVID quarantines. We can all admit to not paying full attention to an online meeting while completing other work. It’s much harder (and ruder) to do it in person.

So now that the pandemic is (mostly) in the rearview mirror and in-person meetings are becoming the norm again, how do we recover some of our time? I would suggest a few things I have done myself:

First, it can be ok to ask for a reschedule. Everyone is busy and tends to respond well when handled professionally. I have found most regular business meetings can be rescheduled, but there will be sometimes when a meeting is set in stone. If moving the time and/or date is not possible, we can explore other options like the second one. 

Second, decide what to consume. There is a plethora of worthwhile content provided in online meetings these days. I have begun to carefully evaluate if each upcoming webinar is necessary. Does it align with my job responsibilities? Will it add value to my organization? If your answers are affirmative and a calendar conflict still exists, sign up anyway. Almost everything is recorded these days.

Finally, know when to ask for help. For more than 42 years, LRS has been here to help when our customers needed it most. From simple questions to complex configurations and services, you will always find our team ready to assist. And as the IT business has changed, we have expanded our expertise to meet new challenges. From edge to cloud, we have you covered.

Yes, time flies and we all need more of it. I suspect the 25-hour day or eight-day week are not coming anytime soon, so contact us and let LRS put more time back in your 24-hour day and seven-day week.

Patrick Schmidt is a Technology Lifecycle Management Specialist with LRS IT Solutions. For more than 24 years, he has been helping customers get a firm grasp on their asset and contract management with a combination of comprehensive service level analysis and lifecycle management best practices.