I like to think I'm a somewhat punctual person. I care deeply, about my friends, my company, my relationships, but there's something that I'm doing that isn't putting my best foot forward in business (and otherwise). I'm always about seven minutes late to meetings. I blame it on living in Argentina--where "early" was a half hour late (a shoot I couldn't miss at work and had to be in the studio at 10am on the dot--I was the only one there until 10:25).

No excuses anymore. I am declaring an end to my tardy. It's making me look bad. I get annoyed when people are late--but I don't hold myself to the same standard. I was with a former client last week, and after apologizing profusely for my 10-minute window, she laughed and kindly said with a knowing nod--"oh, you're always late."--Crap.

I put a call out to friends, mentors, and other professionals for tactics to curb my seven minute problem.

The first problem is our culture of busy, and busy bragging. We're all always rushing around--meeting to meeting, call to call, up and down the country and back again. But punctuality is something that has lost a certain sense of importance. I take full responsibility. I've tried turning my clocks back, even so much as 40 minutes ahead. I've even tried tricking myself--making my calendar appointments a half hour earlier than when they start. It works, but only some of the time.

A bigger issue here: it's just disrespectful. I wouldn't want the same of someone else. So, being conscious of it is important. It doesn't help that it has become socially acceptable to postpone, cancel, or push something off--like meeting someone for drinks. I don't blink when someone cancels on me anymore.

The main issue here is taking on too much, and being unrealistic with how long things take. We are all overloaded with work, busying ourselves, and often taking on more work than we realistically can handle. This is where you run into problems. We are all underestimating the amount of time life really takes.

It's easy to forget about all the little bits of time in our day. "I look at my day and block out all transitions and time blocks that seem like givens: line for coffee, wait time for an Uber, chit chat after a client meeting- so that there are far less assumptions about how long everything will take," says Lexie Kier of Cuurio. "Once you adjust your scheduling with logistic buffers based on real life, suddenly it's much easier to be on time or even early." You need buffers. To account for a longer line somewhere, or an Uber taking a while, or a subway delay. We all assume everything will go perfectly smoothly, which it never will.

Always feeling rushed and apologetic sucks. It leaves you immediately in the red, and making a bad first impression. Being early is actually very important for your success in the meeting. "Being early is good. It provides you with a moment to breathe, collect yourself, and present your best foot forward," said Megha Desai, Founder of MSDharma.

You also should try thinking about who is the person you would never, ever be late for. "I always say, pretend you give a $#! . Would you be late meeting ________? Depending on who you are, fill in the blank for whom you would never ever ever be late even if you had to arrive a week early. Everybody has something or someone that they would never be late for," said Ruth Ann Harnisch. Personally, that includes Beyonce, Amy Poehler, or Richard Branson (among others).

People notice, but they are also noticing where your priorities lie. AKA, social media. If you are late to a meeting, but you're able to post your outfit on Instagram, it's not the best look. "Once I had one of those informational interviews with a young aspiring magazine writer/editor. She was ten mins or so late, very apologetic. But she'd also posted to Instagram that morning and was active on Twitter. Not okay. It's hard to believe you're that pinched for time if you can cadge a few minutes for extras like that. If you've got to be somewhere, put down the phone and get there," said from Marie Claire Features & Special Projects Director Lea Goldman.

If you're going to be late, the very least you can do is let the person know. (Which I can say I always do, except I'm always doing it). Send an email, but even better, call.

There are some tactics, but what about biology? What is the psychology behind being late? A lot of times, it's because we don't want to do something. So then it's a matter of examining how much we are saying yes to things. It is a matter of being more cognizant of your time, how to appropriate it--or instead not overestimating how much we can actually get done. Some of it also has to do with the thrill of a deadline and the adrenaline involved. In "Never Be Late Again," Diana DeLonzor attributes tardiness to personality traits like anxiety. Her research is extensive, and she argues that most late people aren't disrespectful, they just have no idea how long things take.

Whether it's genetic, conditioned, or the result of your over-scheduling yourself, being late sends a message that your time is more important than the time of those you're meeting. Showing up is the most important thing you can do in life. So make sure it's on time.