One of the greatest time thieves I know about is fear.
And by fear I mean those irrational emotions that race through your mind whenever there is something uncomfortable going on. Even before it has happened. Even before you are dealing with any sort of consequence.
Let me illustrate this by using a crude, but very efficient example.
Cue ‘The Office’ and one episode where the character Dwight plots a nasty revenge on his joking colleague, Jim.
For those who don’t know, Jim routinely makes fun of Dwight and always has a joke or two up his sleeve. This time around, though, it is Dwight’s turn.
I won’t go into all the particulars about this episode. Plus, I don’t remember which season or episode number it was.
But what I remember was it was related to snowballs. I believe the episode started out with Jim throwing a snowball at Dwight as Dwight was entering the office building. Not an unusual joke or prank for Jim. But somehow this really rubbed Dwight the wrong way. So much so, Dwight did *a lot* of revenge pranks to get back at Jim. Throughout the entire episode. Jim, who usually is an upbeat and easygoing guy actually became quite stressed and furious with Dwight. And Dwight seemed to really enjoy every moment he would get back at his nemesis.
Towards the end of the day, Jim is really riled up and stressed about everything that has taken place this day.
It is late at night. It’s dark outside. Jim is leaving the office building. It’s finally time to go home.
However, Dwight ain’t done yet.
Outside the office building there is a large parking lot where the employees park their cars. Usually this parking lot is empty at night.
However this night, it is filled with snowmen.
And of course Jim is fearful of Dwight somehow jumping out from behind one of those snowmnen and assaulting him [remember Dwight’s jokes have been going on literally *all day].
Jim is distracted.
He is furious. Angry. Just want it to stop. He is literally waiting for Dwight to just come at him with whatever Dwight’s got. Jim is defeated in his mind. He doesn’t want it anymore. He wants it all to stop.
So Jim yells out loudly [paraphrased]; ‘Alright Dwight, I’ve had it, just come at me and we’re done, okay?!!’
Jim is fearful. Jim is scared. Jimmy boi is DISTRACTED by his own fear. Even though nothing has happened yet.
But Dwight doesn’t appear.
There is just Jim in the pitch blackness and all the snowmen.
The scene then cuts to Dwight who stands on top of the office building roof, looking over the entire parking lot. He laughs. Enjoys himself. And says something like the following;
‘Sometimes you’ve got to use your strongest card and play on your enemy’s weakest point. Which is fear.’
Dwight had really no plans to physically assault Jim.
Dwight just wanted Jim to be scared and fearful.
And executed his plan brilliantly.
I forgot what happened next. I think the whole scene cuts at that point and they somehow become friends the next day. Or some such. Whatever happened really doesn’t matter. What really does matter is this: Do not be like jimmy boi. Do not allow yourself to be scared or distracted by something.
Instead fix what you can and do not worry about what comes next.
This is exactly how you win over your enemies.
Are you going to be scared by a mean letter from the IRS office about tax auditing? What about your boss calling you into his office for a ‘conversation’. Your girlfriend saying she is ‘upset’ because she saw you on social media and she wants to discuss something. So on and so forth.
Do you see yet how this sentence; ‘You know, there is something we need to discuss. Let’s talk later tonight’, literally is designed to make you worrisome and concerned that you have done something wrong?
Especially when you know that usually people don’t tell you anything unless it’s something negative.
Instead you focus on yourself and what you can do *now* to put yourself in a better position at all times. How you can get stronger. How you can get better. And so on. What comes, will come at you. No need to exaggerate and worry if it hasn’t happened yet.
That doesn’t mean blindly walking around and not taking preventative action.
But it does mean do not worry about a snowman unless the snowman actually attacks you.
Anyway, I’ve been going on for long enough. You are wise and you understand how this certainly relates to Time and Energy Protection [TEP].
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