Huge changes in our lifestyles and worldviews have influenced the concept of time, which is an integral part of our collective and individual consciousness. As a result, nowadays we are getting more and more familiar to as well as much more involved in a completely new phenomenon, known as “time management”.
As time is quite an inevitable thing we face every day and even every moment of our being, the ways we see it, feel it and accept it are very different. And, probably, the biggest and overall dissimilarity lies between the Western and the Eastern idea of time and the ways humans can manage it. However, especially when speaking about Eastern societies and cultures, we should distinguish how people see time and how they treat and manage their time.
Western Time Concepts: Materialistic but Practical
The Western world in considered to include American, Anglo-Saxon, Scandinavian, Dutch and Austrian societies. Let’s make out what are the western world’s features of time management.
Time Is a Tool
Time seems rather like a tool to fix life, along with money. Thus, managing your time, you manage your incomes that indicate your place in the social pyramid.
Time Is Money
That’s what we live with. Vice versa, money is time. We quantify it not only with the units of measurement (seconds, days, years etc.), but also with the monetary units and rates of exchange.
Time Is a Mechanism
With all its terms and deadlines, the Western time has been converted into a mechanism, a device which you should know how to use if you want to survive.
Eastern Time Concepts: Abstract but Smooth
The Eastern world includes the territories of Asia and Africa. Although Southern and Eastern Europe, South America and Oceania are rarely taken into account when it comes to the cultural differences between the notions of time around the world, the Eastern thought is more likely to be true for them if we take into account some general historic and cultural details.
Time Is an Element
Time is taken as one of those elements which provide the normal existence and eternal development of the whole Universe.
Time Is a Substance
Ancient eastern philosophies didn’t divide or measure the time. It is a holistic substance that is to keep everything in balance and harmony.
Time Is an Image of Life
Time isn’t a tool you use to live your life – it’s an image of life. With time going by, you can see and feel the life, you can cognize it, and the cognition is the highest value of the life of a human being, the final stage each of us must reach to become immortal. It is actually time that manages you, and you should be patient to its signs that it uses to help you live your own life as you want.
Generally, there can’t be a right or wrong model of time management. The distinctions in the ideas of time and in the approaches to use it or manage it are tightly connected with the geography, history, language and culture. The task for all of us is to comprehend these distinctions and always look for compromises when they are about to bump into each other.