How much do you value your time?

Do you love life? Then do not squander time; for that is the stuff life is made of.
Benjamin Franklin
1706 – 1790

Have you ever considered what your time is worth — and more importantly, what you might do to increase the value of your time?

We like to talk about equality. Well, this is one area of life where we’re all equal. We all get the same amount of time each day. But if you could measure how time is used, you’d find extreme differences in the ways we spend and value our time.

Think about how you spend your time and the value of the different things you do throughout the day. Some tasks are more valuable than others. But do you make a conscious effort to do more of the valuable things and less of the low worth tasks? If you’re like most people, the answer is no.

If you’re employed, you probably know how much you earn per hour. Do you believe you get paid for being present for an hour, or for the value you create during that hour? My feeling is that you get paid for the value you bring to that hour. So could you increase the worth of your time on the job? Of course you could. But most employees I know are reluctant to do more than they’re required to do.

How about your life outside work? Do you spend your time trying to increase the value of your life or do you simply spend your time following the path of least resistance? How much time do you spend on passive activities, like watching TV? How much value do most TV programs add to your life? A good measure is to consider what effect a TV program will have on your life in five years. In most cases, the answer is none; you’ll have totally forgotten most episodes of Survivor or American Idol. Can you spend that time on something that would bring more value to your life? I believe so.

The major difference between highly successful individuals and the rest of society is the amount of time that highly successful people spend on high value tasks. Of course, the highly successful have the same amount of time as everyone else, so in order to spend more time on high value tasks, they have to give up a lot of low worth tasks.

What are some high value tasks? Personal development, both of your mind and your body; developing personal relationships by spending quality time with friends and family; developing a balanced life; making sure your goals and your actions are in alignment.

For most people, it’s easy to improve the quality of their lives by simply becoming aware of and changing the ways they spend their time. Life is all about time; how you spend it determines the quality of your life.

Learn to use your time wisely, because you only have a limited amount. The better use you make of your time, the better your life will be.

Time is the most valuable thing a man can spend.
d. 278 B.C.

Copyright © 2014 John Chancellor

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