“I have no control over my own time”?

So I was on my way over to deliver my paperwork to finally get my degree and I took the subway, I was sitting reading my Kindle, minding my own business when I noticed a woman sat next to me and her boyfriend was there standing in front of her, all of the sudden the woman tells her boyfriend:

“I’m just going to ask you something, please don’t ever say we have plans again, just don’t say we have any plans whatsoever because nothing ever happens, we had plans for today, we had plans yesterday, plans Sunday, plans Saturday… we had plans since Friday…”

She said this in the most calmed manner so it shocked me even more, the man just replied: “So this is all my fault then, just my fault”, the woman said: “yes” and they were silent for a few minutes, after that she quietly asked him to hand her over some Kleenex, I turned my head a little bit and realized she was crying but you couldn’t tell by her voice because it never broke.

After this the woman said:

“Don’t worry I already understood that from the hundred things you have I am the two hundred…It is not even fair to my mom, I could have spend all morning with her but instead I left her alone, I am not treating her the way she deserves to be treated”

So the man replied:

“I am not like that, I don’t plan my days, I don’t plan everything I am going to do, I HAVE NO CONTROL OVER MY OWN TIME”

Wait… WHAT?!, OK, lets elaborate on this remarkably shocking affirmation:

  1. What do you mean you don’t have control over your own time?, do you wake up every day sit on your bed and wait for a phone call?, a mail?, a letter? Do you wait for somebody else to provide you with specific instructions on how you’re going to spend your days, weeks, months?
  2. I strongly believe this affirmation is a coward way out, this is one of the stupidest and easiest way to try and just strip yourself from any responsibility, it is a way to say “I just don’t care”, “It’s none of my business”; it is also a way to make the other person feel responsible for how the dynamics of the relationship is going to be and it is definitely not fair since it makes the other person stress over situations that fall totally outside of their circle of influence.
  3. When you say “I have no control over my own time” you are also saying you have no direction in life, a person with no control over their own time is a person that has no plans, no goals, no dreams and no path, this person has no idea where they’re standing or where they want to go nor how to get there, so what you’re really saying is “I have absolutely nothing to offer because I have no idea who I am”.

I had recently read an article by Calvin Sun in which he stated the following:

I don’t have time” really means “It’s not a priority”

“I am too busy” is a euphemism for “I don’t manage my time effectively”.

“I have too much going on”, “I’m overwhelmed”, and “My schedule is crazy” probably means “I need to learn to say NO”.

He nailed it!, didn’t he?, although the context is definitely not the same I believe these behaviors are closely related, as is everything in life; the attitude you take towards your personal life definitely affects your professional life and vice versa, it affects your relationships, wether these are romantic, familiar or work related so, next time you feel compelled to state something in the line of “I don’t have control over my own time” please take a few seconds to think about the veracity of that statement, if you find it to be true then change your approach and truly try to get to know yourself and your motivations, there is nothing sadder than watching people full of potential wasting it all away because they haven’t realized they have everything to succeed at the reach of their hands.