I am slowly re-watching some of my favorite episodes from The West Wing. In the episode 365 Days, Leo – after his heart attack, no longer chief of staff – is called in to “help out.” It is the day after President Bartlett’s final State of the Union address. At the end of the episode, in a very busy day, with the staff depleted (they are off trying to help the next President get elected), and a dawning realization that ”time is running out,” Leo meets with President Bartlett and his now smaller circle of key advisors, and he writes these three numbers on a White Board:
and then he says:
“…Busy day around here today…. Problem is we’re running out of them.”
Leo looks at the board and then goes and erases the ‘5’ of ‘365’ and replaces it with a ‘4’ and adds the word ‘days’ and circles it and says,
“That’s how much time we have left. We have the ability to effect more change in a day in the White House than we will have in a lifetime once we walk out these doors. What do you want to do with them?”
This is always the time management question – what will you do, what will you accomplish, with the days you have left?
And remember Alan Lakein’s timeless question:
“What is the best use of my time right now?”