“If a man does not keep pace with his companions, perhaps it is because he hears a different drummer. Let him step to the music he hears, however measured or far away.” ― Henry David Thoreau
Personally, I’m not a fan of Daylight Savings Time. Frankly, this manipulation of time appears to be another attempt to control. Indeed, “high noon” became subject to man’s command back in 1895; thank you George Hudson. While the practical effects are still debated, March 11 we will lose an hour … at least for a while.
Photo by soham_pablo on flickr
Why the short February?
Did you know February’s limited number of days is the result of one man’s decision? Indeed, ego played a role in February having 28 or 29 leap year days.
All the other months have 30 or 31 days, but February suffered from the ego of Roman Emperor Caesar Augustus, says (Professor) Stewart. Under Julius Caesar, February had 30 days, but when Caesar Augustus was emperor he was peeved that his month – August – had only 29 days, whereas the month named after his predecessor Julius – July – had 31. “He pinched a couple of days for August to make it the same as July. And it was poor old February that lost out,” says Prof Stewart.
The messiness of time
What is it about our solar system that presents this need of a Leap Year? According to the website, timeanddate.com …
Leap Years are needed to keep our calendar in alignment with the Earth’s revolutions around the sun. It takes the Earth approximately 365.242199 days – or 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes, and 46 seconds (a tropical year) – to circle once around the Sun.
However, the Gregorian calendar has only 365 days in a year, so if we didn’t add a day on February 29 nearly every 4 years, we would lose almost six hours off our calendar every year. After only 100 years, our calendar would be off by approximately 24 days!
With time pressure and our busy lives, things can get messy. How easy it is to neglect relationships, priorities related to mind, body and spirit … even our values, when we get sloppy with time.
The drift of time
A leap year synchronizes the astronomical reality (365.242199 days per year) with our calendar system which is set up with the same number of days each year; until leap year.
Because seasons and astronomical events do not repeat in a whole number of days, a calendar that had the same number of days in each year would, over time, drift with respect to the event it was supposed to track. By occasionally inserting an additional day…into the year, the drift can be corrected.
Over time, the drift of time, can take us off course. Truth deals in reality or the facts. From a personal growth perspective, the process is to create alignment between “my reality” and “reality”.
Where do you need alignment?
When you understand the affect of time pressure and the inclination to drift you will look for opportunities to re-align. Leap Year is that “extra day” for cosmic concerns; every four years we insert an additional day to correct the drift. But the issue for leadership development is not cosmic, it is personal.
Future success requires creating space to listen to your story for truth so you can close the gaps between what you believe to be reality and reality. Reality checks help us discern the difference between our behavior and our desired outcome as leaders.
To create space, you must take control of the pace.
- Where do you need to correct the drift in your story?
- What will it take to align your story with reality?
- When do you have time and place for reflection?
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Photo by soham_pablo on flickr