The Illogical Time is Money Conundrum

Time is money. It’s a saying that you’ve probably heard thousands of times before and it’s an idiom that just about everyone accepts at face value. It becomes especially true for entrepreneurs who work from home, because it means that they have the opportunity to be making more money by working at just about any hour of the day.

However, life is never quite so simple. While the old adage may stand up to scrutiny under many circumstances, many of us continue to pursue activities that are completely counter to its teachings. How often have you wasted away hours of your life when you could have been doing something more productive or more lucrative?

At the same time, is this really a fair thing to say? I think we all deserve to explore at least some of our guilty pleasures, as these can provide a great deal of happiness and reprieve from the daily struggles of life. In this way, it is very tough to place an exact dollar amount on the treasured time we spend with friends and loved ones. Would you give up that time for some more money?

What about the time we spend clipping coupons, looking for sales, and lining up for blowout clearances? What is your time worth to you in that context? As a natural born penny pincher myself, I can oftentimes find myself mulling over the possibility of buying a certain item, shopping around for the best price or negotiating with sellers in online marketplaces. At the end of all that haggling, it’s not uncommon to emerge a mere ten bucks on top. Is that really worth the time?

It positively pays to find the deals, but you have to weigh the time spent in finding such deals. On the flip side, you also have to realize that just because you spent an hour on something (like haggling for a deal) doesn’t mean that you necessarily sacrificed an hour’s worth of your regular wage. The opportunity cost doesn’t always work that way.

To this end, it may be the most advantageous to disassociate time from money altogether. That’s why so many people laud the power of passive income; it frees up their time to do the things that they actually want to do and just the things that they feel they have to do. And isn’t that what life is all about in the first place?