Remember the White Rabbit song from Disney’s Alice in Wonderland? “I’m late, I’m late for a very important date. No time to say hello, good-bye, I’m late, I’m late, I’m late!”
Are you too often in the same fix because of a bothersome habit of being late for everything? Consider ways to break that nasty and irritating (to everyone else) routine of tiresome tardiness.
1. Every evening before going to bed, review all of your next day’s work and meeting schedules. Use the latest electronic gizmo to list plans, and refer to them again first thing in the morning.
2. People who are always late are also often night owls. If you need to break the tardiness habit, get eight hours of sleep before a busy day. Save your late partying for Friday and Saturday nights.
2. If you’re flying to a work assignment, use spare time for some snoozing aboard the flight. That way you’ll arrive at the destination well rested, alert and ready to be on time for all scheduled sessions.
3. Use an alarm system to wake in the morning, especially if you boozed the night before.
4. During the day, carry a watch or smartphone that has a timer buzzer on it. Set an alarm to remind you early enough to make it to that important meeting in plenty of time.
4. Your doctor will tell you to eat and drink modestly. Too much booze and food slow down reflexes. Thus the importance of being on time often fades into sleepy torpor and missed appointments.
5. Limit TV obsession. Most programs on the boob tube are time-wasting and induce laziness. It’s so easy to slouch there in a trance as you miss appointments and work schedules. Do you really need to see repeats of cop shows, celebrity exposures, endlessly repeated ads and infomercials?
6. To meet every schedule, get there early. If you’re to be at work, arrive a half-hour early to relax and have a cup of coffee before digging in for the day. If it’s a doctor’s appointment, meeting in a hotel or office building, do the coffee pause at least 15 minutes before the session starts.
7. If you drive or use public transportation to get to work, and give out the excuse: Sorry I’m late, but the freeway was a real mess this morning; or my bus was stuck in very busy street traffic. That’s as lame as the dog ate your homework. If your city’s heavy drive time starts at 8 am and you need to be somewhere by 8:30, get out on the road at 7 am.
8. Remember back in kid camp days? You couldn’t go into the lake or pool without s buddy checking on you at every moment. Use a similar buddy system with another lateness offender. Get on the smartphone several times during busy days and make sure you both meet all obligations on time.
Breaking the habit of being tardy isn’t difficult. All you have to do is remind yourself several times throughout the day what the White Rabbit says: I’m late, I’m late for a very important date. No time to say hello, good-bye, I’m late, I’m late, I’m late.