Five minutes

There’s something I keep noticing now and then, during my typical days at home. Just about every morning, I make myself at least one cup of tea. I set a timer for five minutes to let my tea steep, because if I don’t set a timer to remind me that I’m making tea, half the time I forget about it and it’s cold by the time I remember.

So I set my timer, and go off to do something else. Half the time I’m still surprised by my tea timer, but I’m starting to also be surprised by the number of things I’ve done since I started making tea. Sometimes I’m so far past where I was when I set the timer, it’s really astonishing.

When you start to notice what can happen in just five minutes, what you can literally do in five minutes’ worth of work, excuses about “I don’t have time to do that” start to sound really hollow. Don’t have time to write? Don’t have time to do some chore that I’m avoiding? Do I have five minutes?

Give it a try. Set a timer for just five minutes, and see what you can get done. Don’t even race around, just get to work like you always would. See if you’re as surprised as I am. And then think about what you could do in life, if you always remembered how much you can do in five minutes.

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