Why being late or too early are equally as bad
Who is guilty of being late? When it comes to being late, I will happily raise my hand for someone who used to be constantly tardy.
I remember my uni days I would leave on time, at least I thought I was. I would get caught in traffic, which I anticipated and then rock up to lecture 10 to 15 minutes late. In lectures, I would feel like I missed soo much and whatever the lectures said would never be stuck. I would then go back home and re-watch the lectures online, only to waste more time.
In my community, people talk about ‘Black people’s time’ as if it is a trait that all black people inherited. For some reason, I despise that term, mainly because it is partially correct. Most African people or African Americans are usually running late, whether it be for a wedding or funeral. But this term should not generalise because there are still plenty of people who are never late — lateness is something that can affect anyone regardless of race, gender or ethnicity.
The reason I am writing this is to help people like me realise how important being on time is. Quite frankly I also despise being too early as well and here is why.
It can be detrimental to be too early. The muse explains this better regarding being too early for an interview to the point where you are sitting outside the door before the recruiting manager even arrive. You might think that you are doing good but you are doing more harm than you think. Another example they gave is arriving early to a party. Your friend might feel obliged to entertain you instead of setting up for the event. As you can see it, is a pain for others to be too early.
How early should one be, you might wonder? 30 minutes early is ideal, but if you see yourself being 45minute, 1 hour to even 2 hours early you need to access and know where you can use that time more effectively. Do something with that time, read a book. At least you gain something valuable from it.
Not only is it a waste of time to linger while waiting for the minute hand to tick, but you might be seen as someone who does not have anything better to do than the function itself. People might take you for granted next time because they have this perception that you have the extra time at hand. Also being too early means you get to notice what time every individual arrive and you tend to get irritated the most of people who are even 2 seconds late, I mean why wouldn’t you be, you’ve been waiting a whole hour right.
Being too late
Chronic lateness is almost an illness in itself. Some people can not simply arrive early, and I was one of these people. Being late, regardless your skills make you appear incompetent. I am stating the obvious here but it is unprofessional. It just gives you a bad reputation at the workplace, community or wherever you will be. And of course, the early birds loathe your timing, after all, who do you think you are? Queen Elizabeth?
So what then is the right time?
From a few finding, it turns out planning your trip with an extra 30 to 45 minute to spare is ideal to arriving at least 5 to 10 minutes early. That extra 30minutes get lost bit by bit as you get your self ready for whatever day you are going to have. Surely when you wake up, you don’t just rush into the shower and next thing you are driving out. You stretch, you look over your phone, respond to texts, catch up on news, etc. This extra time is also necessary if you know your roads tend to get slightly busy.
I suggest getting a wristwatch. Owning a watch can be the best investment for your timekeeping. You might wonder why you need a watch when you have time on your phone 24/7, but here is why.
Regularly checking your phone makes you look desperate to check it, and most likely you get distracted with the notification you receive. The temptation to resist is too much, so you take a few more minutes scrolling through while people are waiting to get back your attention.
Wearing a watch gives you that professional demeanour. They are a convenient way to check the time without finishing your phone at the bottom of your bag or jeans. With so many different kinds of watches out there, it is no doubt watches symbolises style, just as much as it distinguishes a personality. It does not have to be the most expensive watch out there. There are plenty of both man and women wear at decent prices out there. People are more inclined to show you some respect, and you get to create a relationship with time. Your time become valuable, that you know where you are spending it, after all, we are not here for eternity.
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