Lewis Hamilton says he learned the value of time during this year's disrupted F1 season and implies that his new contract with Mercedes will need to allow him to strike the right balance between his work and his freedom away from the track.
Hamilton is reportedly in the closing stages of his negotiations with Mercedes F1 boss Toto Wolff, with the pair ironing out the details of what will likely be the Briton's final contract as a driver.
The 35-year-old revealed recently that 2020 has been a banner year on the sporting front, marked by his seventh world title, but also a period of personal growth during which he learned and educated himself during his free time.
And time is now a commodity greatly valued by F1's mega star and one he would like to see reflected in his new deal with Mercedes.
"I think for me, what I am aware of – and I am sure of you guys, if you have parents around – you know that the most valuable thing we have is time," he recently told selected members of the media.
"Utilizing the time… Naturally we all are chasing dreams, working crazy hours and trying to achieve something, but the most important thing is the memories that you are able to create. So striking the right balance (is crucial).
"I think in the past, for sure, I remember being a workaholic, and just that was all I did.
"There were only a few memory-making moments through the year with the people that matter most to me. And for sure, I want to strike a balance of doing more in the future with that whilst I continue to do things I am passionate about."
Hamilton has built himself a modus vivendi that has worked for him over the years. But reconciling the passions he lives away from the racetrack with his professional commitments hasn't been an easy task.
"When I got into this sport, it was definitely frowned upon by many – ‘he’s over here distracted by these things…’ – and I can tell you it’s not been easy to do those the other things and arrive and do the lap like I did in Singapore (in 2018).
"But only I know what’s right for me, and I felt this is what’s right for me, and I usually follow my heart. And I knew that the things that I was doing I was passionate about, and I was getting energy from them, and it felt great.
"Of course, it felt special to then turn up in a place like Singapore and produce performances like I have. And then it opens up a door.
"Now I know I could continue to do that, however I have to strike a balance of still being conscious of not taking away from my performances on the track.
"I will never sacrifice that in future, or any time."