My best guy friend passed away when we were 29. In high school, we’d bonded as the new kids together sophomore year and, as adults, we were lucky enough to end up living in Boston at the same time. He was probably the best person I knew — kind, hilarious, fun-loving, brilliant, compassionate, friends with everyone. Biggest smile you’ve ever seen.
When we were 29, he was in med school, the same year as my then-boyfriend/now-husband. He was figuring out his medical specialty and building a life with his incredible partner. He was riding his bike, was hit by a motorcycle, and died.
Just like that. That fast.
It jolted me to my core.
At the time, I was a third-year associate at a law firm. I was working long hours toward a goal (partnership) that I was pretty sure I didn’t want. But I was enjoying the work for the most part and making good money, so I just kept plugging along.
Moe’s passing and the suddenness of it made me start questioning a lot. One of those things was work. This was on repeat in my head: “I’m devoting ~85% of my awake hours and energy to a path to a goal I don’t want.”
Long story short, over the next couple of years, I tried to see if I could make law life work for me. I decided I couldn’t at this phase of my life. The emphasis on hours frustrated me — I loved law, but any industry where the mantra is “the more hours you work, the better” was not for me.
So I left to find a better life fit for me. (And I know this comes with a healthy dose of privilege — I had the financial means and support to do it, and I acknowledge not everyone can. It’s just part of my story, so I’m sharing it with you.)
And as I figured out what I wanted to do for work and what drove me, I landed on helping women manage their time to enjoy their lives more.
And it occurred to me recently that perhaps my respect for time, drive to use it well, and desire to help others do the same comes at least in part from Moe. Both from his life and his death. He lived life to the fullest – seeking fun, loving hard, and working tirelessly toward goals he believed in passionately. And, obviously, his too-soon death.
I guess what I’m saying is, time management goes far beyond your calendar. That’s just a means to an end. The goal is to truly enjoy your life. To spend as much of your time as possible doing what makes you happy and fulfilled. To accomplish the personal and business goals that are important to you. And to replace stress with peace of mind so you can be present with the people you love.
That’s why I care about this stuff so much.
Life’s short – and can be shorter than you ever realized. It’s cliché until something happens to make you understand it’s very true. And life is made up of time. Cherish it. Protect it. Use it well.