How To Value Your Time
I hope you are doing well, I know we haven’t connected by newsletter in a couple weeks. In fact, a client who is also a part of our YMJA Community observed that she thought I had unsubscribed her from our newsletter mailing list. If you began to think like that too, perish-the-thought. I have been thinking of you. Truth is, the Month of April has been challenging, with three car accidents, personal sickness, family sickness, and I just learned today that someone I met last week Saturday, died violently last night. April has been no joke, but I am coaching myself through it to clarity, sanity and serenity, and I am grateful to God for life and the grace to work through the challenges with a keen sense of hope.
This leads me to the subject of this post, I’d like to share with you today. I often advise my clients, as well as the young college students and graduates I also serve, “Live life with…urgency…not anxiety.” I am confident that you know all the clichés about the importance of time, and why we should value it and how short life is, etc. Yet you may still struggle with
- Figuring out the best use of your time
- Convincing others to respect your time
- Not knowing where-the-time-has-gone
Sometimes when something is intangible it is hard to relate to. For greater understanding, it is good to have something more familiar and tangible to connect it with. So here is an approach to literally valuing your time, which may help you appreciate even more than you already do, why time is precious. More so why…YOUR time is precious.
Get a sheet of paper and something to write with and let us convert the minutes of your life to a dollar value.
- Write down the highest annual gross salary you have earned in your life.
- Calculate your hourly rate by taking that number and dividing it by 2000. Two thousand is roughly the average number of hours we work per year. e.g. US $120,000 per annum / 2000 = US $60 per hour
- Calculate your per minute rate by taking your hourly rate and dividing by 60. There are sixty minutes in an hour. e.g. US $60/60 = US $1 per minute. Therefore, based on the example, currently each minute of your life represents US $1
Based on your calculations, using your highest earning as a benchmark, you now have a clear basis to assess the value of your time in monetary terms. That is, at least on the basis of the salaries paid in your country of residence. Now, this is not the time to get all depressed about how low your time is valued by the labour market or your employer (smile).
However, it is the time for you to seriously think about, and ask yourself some hard and honest questions, about how you are currently using your time, and what is the best use of your time. For example, you may ask:
When I engage in a given activity e.g. Surfing the internet for say 14 hours of my life per week, this means I give away US $840 per week (i.e. US $60 per hour x 14 = $840).
- Have I received adequate life enhancing value in exchange for this time I have given away?
- What is an even better use of my time, that would more greatly improve my life and/or that of my family?
- How does the value I am investing in this activity enhance the achievement of my short-term and/or long term goals?
You may also begin asking
- Am I satisfied with the value that the labour market has assigned to me at this stage of my life?
- How can I use my time differently to improve the monetary value of my hourly rate to the labour market?
- Am I engaging in the kinds of activities that can generate additional wealth or value equal to or greater than my hourly rate of pay?
Of course, a useful cliché to reference at this time is “Money is not everything!” However, I think we can agree that money is easy to understand, and relate to. That is why I recommend that you use this monetary approach, if you struggle with valuing your time. At the very least, it will help you develop a self-consciousness, that even a minute of your life has value. That self-consciousness is a key first step in becoming empowered to not only making wise(r) and discriminating choices about how you spend your time, but also, that self-consciousness is key to your finding your voice to insist that the persons in your life and career context, similarly respect your time. Your time is unequivocally precious. As you know, tomorrow is not promised to anyone, so live life urgently, mastering your time, to improve your sense of satisfaction and wellbeing, so you do not live…anxiously.
Cheryll Messam is a Personal & Professional Development Consultant, Life, Corporate & Career Coach, Professional Resume Writer and LinkedIn Profile Writer. She helps professionals overcome workplace, job hunting, career management, emotional intelligence, self-confidence challenges, as well as set and accomplish life & work goals. To learn more about our services click on the links below and feel free to contact Cheryll via email: email@example.com or phone: 954-762-7942 (Int); 876-357-6397 (Local)
Looking forward to being Your Ally for Excellence in Life & Work as you are bound for your best year to date! BEGIN TODAY!by