Time is the most valuable resource we have. Once you spend it, you cannot go back and get a refund. There aren’t any second opportunities, sales, or exchanges either. Unlike money, time is non-renewable. You cannot earn more time. Time is precious. Time needs to be treated appropriately as to what it actually is – the most valuable resource we have.
If you were to see a 10 dollar bill blowing in the wind, you would probably go to great lengths to chase that ten dollars, no matter the inconvenience or effort required. You see that ten dollars as valuable.
Do you treat ten minutes, or even an hour with the same sense of value? Do you chase those minutes or hours with excellence and vigour, just as you would the ten dollars? In a world filled with distraction and procrastination, my answer is no, you probably don’t.
I have heard it said that getting rid of distractions will automatically catapult you into the top 5%. That means, if you spend your time well, you will be incredibly successful. If you don’t, you can count on living an average life.
I witness far too many people wasting their time. Be the person who values time – who is extremely careful as to how they spend it. Like purchasing an expensive item at the store, before you put down 5 hours of your life, be sure it’s a purchase you want to make. The more time required, the more expensive the purchase.
If you were to walk into a car dealership and they were offering Ferrari’s and bus passes for the same amount of money, we would all purchase the Ferrari. We would choose the more valuable item to get the most for our money. The same can be said for your time…
STUDENTS AND THOSE IN THE WORK FORCE…YOU ARE MAKING EXPENSIVE PURCHASES WITH YOUR TIME EVERYDAY! INSTEAD OF PURCHASING A DOLLAR STORE ITEM WITH THOSE 6 -10 HOURS; STUDY, WORK HARD, AND CHALLENGE YOURSELF, SO THAT YOU ARE USING THOSE HOURS TO PURCHASE A FERRARI INSTEAD OF A BUS PASS.
Here is the plan to be above-average, and chase excellence with your time…
Track Your Time
Find a piece of paper and record very specifically, what you did yesterday and the day before. For example, yesterday, I woke up at 7, then spent 10 minutes getting my coffee ready, and writing in my “confidence journal” (Read: Mental Fitness Plan). My time entry would look like this:
7:00 – Woke up
7:05 – Coffee
7:10 – Confidence Journal
Track your entire day. This will take some time, but the time spent will be worth the purchase!
Be sure the two days you are reflecting upon reflect your typical day. If the past two days are unique and not a true reflection, reflect upon days that are your norm. You want this activity to be as accurate as possible.
When finished, search for sections of your day that are “wasted” or not used efficiently. Most will find their phone use to be the main culprit of wasted time. Research shows that on average, people are on their phones for 2 hours, and 25 minutes per day; or 145 minutes. If you do the math, in a year, the average person will be on their phone for 52, 925 minutes, or 882 hours, or the equivalent of 36.75 days! The average person will spend MORE THAN A MONTH on their phones in a year!
If you want to push the math even further…in the course of 60 years, an average person will have spent 2, 205 days on their phone – or just over six years of their life.
A Quick Change For Excellence
For the purpose of this article, I am using phone statistics to reveal how distraction is the behaviour of the average. But your “time-vice” could be television watching, shopping, gambling, socializing, etc. Whatever your “time-vice” may be, you can also use the following “quick change” to your advantage. A “time-vice” is an activity that you spend an unhealthy amount of time on.
So, the average person is on their phone for 145 minutes a day. What if you used your phone for 60 minutes a day? (I still think 60 minutes is excessive – 30 minutes would be optimal – but for the sake of making a change manageable, 60 minutes will be the number.) Instead of 882 hours spent on your phone during the course of a year like the average user, you will spend 365 hours on your phone. This is a difference of 517 hours; or 21.5 days! In the course of 60 years, you will have saved 1,290 days, or 3.5 years in direct comparison to the average person!
Think about it…by simply reducing your phone time, you will save 21.5 days every year of your life. It’s like finding that ten dollar bill in the wind…no wait…it’s like finding thousands of dollars blowing in the wind!! If you spend your “found time” learning, growing, reading, training, and working on your passions and goals, you will go from average, to an influencer, and a top person in your field.
Write down, very specifically, how you spend your normal day. Do this by tracking your last two days. Find your “time-vice”. Once you find your time-vice, the true work begins. ACTION! Many people know they should change, but very few put in the work to do so.
For the next week, cut your “time-vice” in half. Use the extra time productively, like reading, working out, mediating, and writing. Watch your productivity grow! You will see amazing results quickly!
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- Be sure to read my other leadership posts. Check back every Sunday for the next article that will challenge you and prepare you for a life of impact and success.
- My book, “Seeds of Excellence for Teens: 24 Life Principles For Those Who Want to Stand Out From The Crowd“, is available on Amazon.