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Speaking of time, there seem to be just two ways of perceiving it: some people complain about never having any, others are always looking for ways to kill time. But time is actually very fairly distributed. Everyone gets 60 minutes per hour and 24 hours per day, net. it is only the daily tasks that are distributed unequally. They make the day too short for some people and too long for others.

Just imagine a pupil who is handed his lessons for the week all in one lump: "By Saturday you have to do 100 maths problems, read 20 pages in your reading book, write two dictations and a composition, and know all about the geography of the North Sea and about the biblical Flood. You must also learn two songs, participate in sports and find time for needlework and drawing." The pupil will probably be shocked by this mountain of work and prefer to stay in bed pretending to have the flu. However, divided according to subjects and lessons, the weekly workload is not as intimidating. The child sees that all the subjects can be covered -- and there is free time as well.

A schedule can also help adults to fight their way through too many commitments. It shows us how the 168 hours of a week is spent. For example, that we slept a total of 3020 minutes, sacrificed 2875 minutes for our job, spent 1885 minutes on various tasks such as shopping or a visit to the dentist, and that only 2300 minutes was left for leisure time.

By means of such an analysis, we can observe critically the aspects we like and the ones we don't. Some of the results might even shock us -- when we realize, for instance, how much time we spend watching television and how little time remains for the people closest to us.

Often time problems are caused by an external situation. In our work, we usually have no choice but to fix dates and to be on time for appointments. But time problems also have their roots in our fears and desires. They are not simply a matter of fate, they are at least partly homemade. Continually we are falling into our own traps by overlooking our days. Afterwards, we get angry because every unexpected occurrence throws us off completely.

The same problem occurs if we let ourselves get bogged down with a number of small tasks before we focus on the main job. When we finally give our undivided attention to the latter, a lot of time has already been wasted. Another example is that many people take on too many responsibilities, not out of a spontaneous desire to help, but because they are afraid that other people will look at them askance and because due to their own insecurity, they are dependent on the approval of others. Thus, they comply with every request, no matter how unpleasant. The desire to be praised can be so strong that they even refrain from saying how time-consuming and difficult it has been to complete the task.

People who have time don't necessarily wok less than others who are always in a rush. But they know how to set priorities, and they stick to their decisions. Learning how to use your time best can change your whole way of life and help you to get tasks accomplished.

From paragraph 1 :
  1.

According to the writer, what are the two ways of perceiving time ?

   

From paragraph 2 :

  2.

(a) What 'mountain of work' does the writer refer to ?

(b) How can this mountain of work be tackled ?

    From paragraph 3 and 4:
  3.

What is the importance of

(a) a schedule, and

(b) an analysis ?

    From paragraph 6 :
  4.

What happens when we are

(a) bogged down with a number of small tasks ?

(b) given too many responsibilities ?

    From paragraph 6 and 7 :
  5.

(a) How can one learn to use their time best ?

(b) What are the rewards for managing one's time well ? Give two examples.

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Answers
 

1.

Some perceive as having no time while others complain of having too much.

 

2.

(a) He refers to the myriads of schoolwork a pupil has to carry out.

(b) It can be tackled by dividing the work according to subjects and lessons.

 

3.

(a) A schedule helps one to cope with the many commitments he or she has to carry out.

(b) An analysis helps one to be aware of the aspects of work that we like and dislike, thereby revealing our priorities.

 

4.

(a) we may not be able to carry out the main task well.

(b) They become too time-consuming or difficult to be carried out.

 

5.

(a) We can do so by knowing our priorities and sticking to them.

(b) i. It can change our whole way of life for the better

     ii. It can help us to get tasks acomplished.

 
 
 
 

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Comprehension 1

 

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