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From time to time I come across something more valuable than goods, services or money. Sometimes something of value is a few wisely written words.

Reverend . T. G. Windsor


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The Most Valued Gift!

What is the most valuable gift you can bestow on anyone?

For the longest time I thought it was some expression of knowledge – insightful, practical and relevant to some person’s life – that would serve him/her both now and in the future. I was wrong! Knowledge is fickle.

As I gained experience in business, and perhaps because I
considered myself an entrepreneur, I came to a different conclusion. It was ‘opportunity’. The wonderfully warm and exhilarating feeling of being able to make a significant difference in someone’s life by opening those special doors
that allowed her/him to move on to new successes. Again, I
was wrong! Opportunities are fleeting and capricious.

Softening with advancing years, I began to look at the world
somewhat differently. My values seemed to be changing with
my perspectives and priorities and I was placing a whole
different emphasis on ‘quality of life’. Issues such as relationships, wisdom, magnanimosity, benevolence, charity
and patience became much more important. I needed to be an authentic person. Was this the greatest gift? The answer,
yet again, was ‘no’. I was expected to be authentic – it was a ‘given’.

The key to the search is in the word “valuable”. The problem
with my thinking up to this point was that I had been defining value in my own terms, in my reality and experience. To find the answer I needed to shift to another dimension – the reality of the receiver, the other person.
I needed to rise above myself!

As soon as I did this, I realized just how ignorant I had become in my selfishness. Just because something was important to me did not mean it would be important and valued by another. Other people were just different.

I must have been seriously short-changed in the empathy department – empathically challenged, in fact. I simply didn’t know what was important to others, even those who were near and dear to me. I had to ask, and this was a painful experience on occasions.

The true answer regarding the most valuable gift came as a
profound shock. The answer I’ve found is ‘time’.

Thinking about it, as I now do, the reasons are obvious.
Time is the only resource I possess that is absolutely finite – I have a fixed amount and I can’t negotiate with the Almighty for any more than I’ve already been given.

Time is also the true test of my sentiments in that it fixes my priorities, determines my actions under pressure, and it is the ultimate yardstick by which I’ll assess the quality of my life in the final moments.

Where, on what and with whom will I spend my time? In which areas of my life will I invest it? How will I know, in those final moments when I have no credits left, that I’ve used it wisely, sensitively, productively, well?

One thing I have concluded with confidence, the best moments of my life are those I invest in other people. From here on, you can be sure, I shall seek only to invest time with those who see value in the most valuable gift that I have to offer – my time.

Thanks for considering this - it’s my gift to you

Written By David Huggins


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