An Extra 24 Hours: Spending Leap Day in a Mannerly Way

I was in middle school when I first saw one. It took me a while for my brain to process what the wooden coin was and why others found it so funny. Did you get it? It is a roundtoit. As in “I’ll do it when I get a round to it.” I think of this small disk every time we come around to another Leap Year. In this day and age, doesn’t it seem like we try to schedule 26 hours of activity into our normal 16 hours of daytime? Our tasks, errands and assignments always seem to take a bit longer than we expect. And even once something is checked off our To-Do list, three others jump out of nowhere to take its place. This is, of course, why I love leap year. Once every four years, to match our calendars to our planet's trip around the sun, we add an extra day.

This year is one of those lovely years. We are afforded an extra 24 hours to spend as we please. How will you spend your 16 extra waking hours? Here are some mannerly suggestions.

Write for Real ~ Instead of dashing off a quick e-mail or leaving a harried message, take the time to sit down and write a real letter. You can finally catch up on some long over-due thank you notes, or perhaps write a heartfelt note to a faraway friend.

Face to Face ~ You know that person you have been meaning to spend time with? The one you always say "We really need to get together!" to as you run to your next task? The one whose company you miss, but your schedule does not seem to accommodate? Now is the time to get together, face to face. Meet for brunch, coffee, lunch, afternoon tea or dinner. Take the time to reconnect with that person you miss.

Mark the Occasion ~ Was there a birth, birthday, wedding, anniversary or holiday you meant to celebrate with a gift, but you have not had the time to shop? Now is your chance to catch up on your social circle obligations. No gifts to buy? Take a leisurely stroll through your local card store. Stock up now on cards so they are at the ready when you need to send one.

Expand Your Circle ~ Have you been meaning to expand your professional circle, join a local organization, or follow up with the people whose business cards you have collected at networking events? Now is a great time to update your contact database, send notes to your existing contacts and letters to your new contacts. Nonexistent or stale networks are no networks at all. Business is all about relationships, so be sure to keep in touch with your contacts.

Family Fun ~ As we all know, no one proclaims on their death bed that they wished they’d spent more time at the office. Carve out some time on the 29th to spend with those you love. Have you been meaning to update the family albums, visit a local museum, or try out a new restaurant? Well, here is your day. Make some memories.

This Saturday is Leap Day, February 29th. It is my hope that you will spend your day in a mannerly way.