We live in a culture populated by running-late-ers. You know them.
They text you at 12:10pm while you’re waiting to order lunch saying, ‘Sorry, something came up, I’m running late!’ Or, ‘Sure, I’ll be at your dinner party but I’ll most likely be late, don’t wait for me.’
Maybe you’re one of them yourself.
We all have situations that come up and create lateness against our very best intentions. Those just have to be accepted and worked with. The real problem is the insidious lateness virus that permanently affects our ability to ever show up for anything on time.
It happens gradually, one incident after the other, until your ‘acceptable lateness’ factor increases from 5 minutes, to 10, to 15 … clock hands ticking relentlessly further and further around that dial.
Lack of punctuality de-values the other person or people who are waiting for us. It says, ‘My time is more important than yours, so I can keep you waiting.’ It destroys trust. It creates anxiety in our hosts and hostesses. It overcooks vegetables. It keeps children waiting on kerbsides. It makes already too-long meetings even longer.
Developing a habit of punctuality isn’t easy, but it pays off. You discover that in a curious way you actually have more time if you show up for things on time. You’re less stressed, and so is everyone else.
Let’s value everyone else’s time as much as our own. Let’s keep our commitments. Let’s delete the pre-saved ‘Sorry, running late’ texts off our phones, and …