I’m a timely person.
I’m timely because I think it’s rude to be late.
Even worse, I think it’s despicable for a person to be consistently late. The consistently late are a selfish pack of uncivilized heathens who should be pay higher taxes and be forbidden from ever celebrating Thanksgiving.
Consistently late is also a sign that you suck at life. It’s perhaps the clearest sign of all. If you’re a member of the consistently late clan, you should know that we all think this, and we despise you for it. We may like or even love you, but we despise you, too, for your selfishness and inability to act like a decent human being.
TIME offers 9 Habits of People Who Are Always on Time. It’s a good list. I particularly like numbers 1, 2, 4, and 8. Adopt these habits and you’ll be much better off.
Allow me to add a tenth to the list:
Prepare yourself to leave the house well in advance of actually leaving the house.
For example, if you’re meeting friends for dinner, and you plan to leave the house at 6:00, don’t wait until 5:30 to get ready, even if it normally takes you about 30 minutes to get ready.
This makes no sense. Frankly, it’s insane.
Requiring 30 minutes to get ready is also insane, but that’s an entirely different set of problems.
If the last thing you do before leaving the house and prepare to leave the house, all it takes is one setback in your preparation process to cause you to be late. One item of clothing that unexpectedly needs ironing. One wardrobe reconsideration. One spill. One hangnail. One malfunctioning hairdryer. One unavoidable phone call. One screaming child.
If you plan to leave the house at 6:00, why not get ready to leave at 4:00? Just be ready. Whatever benefit you think you are deriving from showering and getting dressed and applying makeup just prior to leaving the house, I promise you that you are the only person noticing it.
More importantly, the people who you are meeting would undoubtedly favor less attention to your physical appearance and more attention to your timeliness.
In fact, valuing your physical appearance over arriving on time is the epitome of selfish.
“I made you wait so my hair could look just right.”
Disgusting, yet it’s essentially what people do all the time.
I’ve proposed my idea to several of my friends and colleagues over the past week, and almost universally, they think it’s a ridiculous idea. “Get ready two hours before I leave the house?” said one. “That’s stupid.”
The only two people who have agreed with the merit of this proposal are the two people in my life who I can depend upon the most to be on time.
One woman and one man. Always on time, regardless of weather or traffic.
Also two of the most impressive and accomplished people who I know.