1Time CrunchedThere is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven.-- ECCLESIASTES 3:1 NIVAs a young woman, I took time for granted. Not anymore. Some of us understand intuitively that time is our greatest gift -- ours to invest for a lifetime. For others, like me, it takes a defining moment to realize that moments, hours, and days are all we have -- a defining moment followed by a complete shift in life priorities. It may be losing a loved one. It may be giving up on a dream. For me it was having two healthy babies and losing two babies, one in the second trimester of pregnancy. For years I had been a career woman and wasn't even sure I had time for kids. Time was all about me. But having and losing children -- struggling for the dream of motherhood I hadn't even realized was hidden deep within me -- caused me to reevaluate my time in a big way. More on my story in a moment...as we say on TV.First let's talk about you. After all, it's about time. Yours. In decades of television and radio interviews, I've heard one consistent theme: American women are in a time crisis. "There's just not enough time," everyone seems to say. We're doing more but are less satisfied. Fueled by both internal and external pressures, we run from task to task without pausing to ask ourselves,Do I really want to do all this stuff? Am I investing my life where it matters?How do we manage to find the time to balance our supercharged, overscheduled lives?To prove that I wasn't just imagining this time crisis, I commissioned a national survey on women and time (go to www.carolyncastleberry.com for the full scoop on how we put this together, who we interviewed, and verbatim comments from our participants). Sure enough, in an online survey of three hundred women, we found that 74 percent of them weren't happy with how they spent their time. That's three out of four!Half of our group felt busier than they did five years ago (50 percent); nearly that many didn't feel there was enough time to get everything done (45 percent) and said they didn't have enough time for themselves (43 percent). Here's another finding that confirmed what women are saying -- one in three women (34 percent) described herself as overwhelmed. Listen to what some of the women said are their greatest time traps:"Too many demands on my time from people who do not consider that I have other things to do""Too many activities at one time as a single mom""Expecting too much from myself""Letting others tell me how things should be done""Lack of ambition or drive to get things done""I just have a lot going on. I am a full-time everything."How Do You Feel About Your Time?Whether or not you are also a "full-time everything," how do you feel about how you are investing your time? We asked the participants in our survey to tell us how much they agreed with several statements that measure perceptions in these four important areas impacting time management: Outside Pressures Attitudes Smart Strategies Time WastersA significant proportion of women felt stress and dissatisfaction about time management. Based on these attitudes toward time, we identified five groups of women, each with distinctive characteristics. Chances are you'll see yourself in one of these "time groups" -- which range from women who felt overwhelmed when it came to time management (34 percent) all the way to those who were very organized and comfortable with their ability to effectively use their time (26 percent). The remaining 40 percent felt they needed some help in managing time and had specific challenges that keep them from doing so.If you're looking for your basic, how-to-do-more-stuff time-management book, this isn't it. Instead, we'll look at the real reasons we're not investing our time the way we want to. You'll bCastleberry, Carolyn is the author of 'It's about Time!: 10 Smart Strategies to Avoid Time Traps and Invest Yourself Where It Matters', published 2009 under ISBN 9781416568452 and ISBN 141656845X.