How Much is Your Time Worth?
We’ve all heard it said. “Time is money”. What does it really mean?
Does it mean to do everything quickly because you’re losing money
every time you slow down? Think about it. What a horrible way to
live. You feel pressure every day to make every minute “worth it”. I’m
as guilty as the next person; complaining about traffic, lines and
restaurant waits instead of enjoying an extra song on the radio,
striking up a conversation with the person behind me or having a
drink at the bar while I’m waiting for the table.
As consumerism has grown in this screwed up world of ours,
we “need” more and more to be happy. A bigger house, a nicer
car, fancy schools for our kids and money; lots and lots of money.
Then we need to maintain all this. Why? Because we are told to.
Magazines are now 80% ads that we pay for! HGTV has us
feeling sorry for the poor people who have only 3000 square
feet of living space to raise their two children.
To keep this lifestyle going, we continue to rob the “time bank”.
An extra hour at work that we subtract from our daughter’s
softball game. A late evening meeting that negates the reading
of “Good Night Moon” for the thousandth time. Being impatient
for your kid to have his turn in the school concert so you can
leave. We’ve all been there and when you look back, it’s the
concert where he looked into the lights and didn’t hit the
xylophone once, that you remember, not a dinner with people
you will probably never see again.
We need to get it together. Many of us worked holidays for
years because we were in medicine, or a first responder, and
it was a requirement of our jobs, not because we needed a
promotion or a raise. We have very little understanding of
actually going into the office on a weekend if we don’t have
to. We have worked in ER’s and ICU’s where no matter what
a person has accumulated over the years, it becomes totally
inconsequential. We have watched a CEO die alone while a
certain garbage man I know had all five of his kids next to him
every time he needed them.
Let’s make it stop. Turn the phone off when you are with your
kids. Things can wait until tomorrow (unless it’s an airway or
bleeding. By all means, look after that). Evaluate what you
actually need. Get rid of the week-end email and be PRESENT,
not just there. Don’t lose your family in that big house, use the
money to travel instead. Memories beat out square footage
And to tie this little rant into work, we are a “run on time office”
and we spend an hour with each of our patients. Dr. Shim gets it.
The saying should be “Time is valuable”. Spend it wisely.
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