By Benjamin Whitener
Staff reporter

Too often I see people who are in such a hurry to get somewhere that they are going 50 miles per hour in a 30 mile per hour speed zone. I see commercials for cars that can reach 120 miles per hour for no apparent reason. No street in America has a 120 mile per hour speed limit. We go to get fast food and if we don’t get our order in less than two minutes, we get angry because our time is so precious.

We live in such a fast paced society where everything has to be moving and people have to be going, going and going. There is no stopping. We have restaurants and retail stores that are open 24 hours a day so that people can go whenever they can fit eating and shopping into their hectic schedules.

Why? What is so important that we have to be moving non-stop and so fast all the time?

Slow down.

I have heard numerous people say they are going to work really hard and save tons of money for their retirement. They want to have a nice wad of cash to fall back on when they are old. Since we equate time as money, the more time they can put into something and the quicker they can do it, the more money they can get out of it. But what is the real cost of working yourself all out until you retire?

Working hard and in a timely manner are great characteristics. However, the only thing you will accomplish by working all the time is stressing yourself out. The mental strain that occurs when you go at it all day, every day, is huge.

Having this kind of stress all the time can be very dangerous to your physical health. It can cause high blood pressure, which can lead to heart attacks, strokes, kidney failure and much more, all because you wanted to move fast and make that money for retirement.

What good is having a ton of money saved up for retirement going to do you if you are too old to do anything with it, or worse, dead?

Sometimes we get so caught up with money and work and school that we forget to have some fun.

Everyone shouldn’t go out and quit their jobs or drop out of school just to have fun, but they should take some time to enjoy life. Life is short, and for a society of people that value time so much, one would think that people would figure that out.

You don’t have to go on some big vacation. Stay home and read a book one day or go to the park and take a walk. Go hang out at a friend’s house and play board games or something else fun. Take up a hobby that you can mess around with at your leisure. Pick something that interests you, but has absolutely nothing to do with your job. Just do something to slow down and enjoy life.

I know what you’re thinking. How on Earth is a college student going to find the time to have fun? You’ve got five or six classes and every teacher seems to think that their class is the only one you have. Each teacher gives you a ton of homework and you don’t have time for fun. Or do you?

The truly great thing about having multiple people in a class is that you can work on stuff together. Put together a homework group from your class and work on assignments together. Don’t copy off of each other, but help each other. Doing this could help you to finish your homework quicker and free up some time for fun.

Other ways to make time are to do your homework as soon as your class is over. Many people have breaks between classes where they will go and do absolutely nothing. That doesn’t really sound productive. Most of the fun stuff happens later in the day and it would suck to miss out on it for homework.

The key to all of this is to utilize your time better. Once you have figured out that, you can go and drive that car 120 miles per hour straight to the nearest burger joint and wait in line for half an hour. After all, you’ve got the time.

Benjamin Whitener is a junior majoring in digital arts. You may e-mail him at benjamin.whitener@sckans.edu.