That’s the theme of “About Time”, the new movie starring Rachel McAdams which just hit theaters. My girlfriend and I saw the film this weekend and thoroughly enjoyed it.
The plot focuses on a young man who learns a secret from his father on his 21st birthday – all the males in his family have the ability to travel back in time.
The young man knows instantly what he wants to use his gift for: to find a girlfriend.
At first the possibilities are endless for how to use his new power. He’s able to fix those awkward dinner conversations, perfect the first kiss, even stop the love of his life from meeting a bad boyfriend.
Late in the movie things really get interesting. I don’t think I’m spoiling anything, but the question for the main character becomes “Instead of traveling back in time to fix my mistakes, how can I do things better the first time around?”
Think about the day you had yesterday. If you could do it over again what would you change?
What do you regret? Is there something you have been putting off you wish you had worked on? Is there a phone call you wish you had made? Do you wish you had watched the sunset with your significant other?
Better yet, ask yourself this question:
If you could live today over again, what would you do differently?
You may need to read that question over again a few times. It can be a difficult one to process.
It’s a question I’ve been asking myself every morning since The Storyline Conference. As part of the conference we were given the Storyline Productivity Schedule – a daily resource to inspire productivity and purpose. At the beginning of each day you’re asked to answer this question.
The question challenges me. Each morning I struggle to answer wondering how I can move past the monotony of the daily grind into a more fulfilling story. There have been days when I have no idea how to answer.
What I keep coming back to is this thought from Ephesians:
Pay careful attention, then, to how you walk – not as unwise people but as wise – making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil. (Ephesians 5:15-16)
I saw an interview with Jon Bon Jovi a few years back on “60 Minutes”. He said something toward the end of the interview that stuck with me.
When asked how he lived such an enchanted life he said something to the effect of, “Too many people live their life saying ‘I coulda done that. I shoulda done that.’ I say, ‘Let’s go.'”
You don’t have to be a rock star to say “Let’s go” in life. You don’t have to be a time traveler to start living a better life.
Just start thinking about your day as if you’ve already lived it. Ask yourself what you would do differently if you knew you had a second chance. Then do more of those things.
Once you start living with a time traveler’s mindset you’ll be happier than Rachel McAdams getting a new romantic comedy script in the mail. That, my friends, is true happiness.
***If you really want to start your day off with purpose, I highly recommend downloading and printing out the Storyline Productivity Schedule. It’s a free resource which allows you to plan your day and focus on what truly matters. Give it a shot for two weeks and see if you can tell a difference in your daily routine.