“We’re stewards over our time, our talents, our resources. Stewardship involves a sense of being accountable to someone or something higher than self.” Stephen R Covey
One of ‘my’ original tenets is that everything we do in life we do for someone, with someone, or as a result of someone else’s input. We don’t live and work in a vacuum. Stewardship reflects this situation – for our purposes it is defined thus by Wikipedia – “Stewardship is now generally recognized as the acceptance or assignment of responsibility to shepherd and safeguard the valuables of others.” Stewardship ‘is a trust, in the sense that what we have (talents, time, resources) are not ours to do with as we please, but they belong to others. We therefore have a responsibility to use those things wisely for others.
Accepting for a moment one of my other tenets (that there’s nothing wrong with finding ‘what’s in it for me’ in any service or purpose), you and I are therefore stewards, and accountable for the use of our time, talents and resources because they also belong to those we serve.
Even when what we are doing is essentially selfish on the outside (having fun, partying, starting a new business in an effort to make money, going fishing), others are being served by us – they are being paid to provide their services, they are being employed, they are partying with us, etc.) There is no accountability gap. What we do involves others either as servants or the served. Hence the stewardship argument – to do the best we can with what we have, so that others can be served too.
What are you using your time for? Or more precisely, are you using your time to best effect – are you serving, learning, growing, becoming something more than you were a few minutes, days or weeks ago? How about your talents? Are you holding back on the best you could be in the hope that someone will notice what you’re hiding and suddenly make you great? How about other resources – are they sitting idle, rusting and deteriorating through lack of use? Remember that the unused car may look nice, but when you try to start it – will it seize? (Cliché moment – a ship is safest in the harbour, but that’s not what ships are for.)
At the moment I am at a bit of a hiatus – a number of projects are ongoing and awaiting the moment of execution. Once they start I hope I’ll be run off my feet but just now it’s almost quiet. So in an effort to utilise my own time I will be reviewing my writings (books!) and seeing how I can improve and recirculate them as a service to those who may just benefit from the assembly of words and the codifying of random thoughts. I’m also reading a novel or two and I’ve committed to testing myself in one of my hobby areas in an effort to comply with my Three Resolutions.
Time’s a-wasting, and as it belongs to you I have every intention of using your time wisely. Oh, and thanks for letting me have it.
*My time is your time. According to Google Translate.