It might sound funny coming from a blogger that’s made her niche in personal finance (and business), but money isn’t the most important things in life.
Do you want to know what is?
Money isn’t the most important thing in life. Time is. Here’s why and what you can do to start valuing your time more than your money.
You Can Make More Money, You Can’t Make More Time
As much as I love the ability to earn as much money as I want with self-employment, I’ve found that it can also be a burden. I love earning more money so I can live comfortably and achieve my financial goals, but it really feeds my workaholic nature.
You see, despite what some may think, I work WAY MORE than “full time” hours on my business.
I work 9-10 hours days (at least). 5 days a week. I usually work a couple hours on the weekends as well. And, even when I take a vacation or “take a day off” I usually check my email or do something related to work. (In fact, I’m writing this post from the airport on my way to vacation right now.) It’s also impossible to shut off your brain and not think about business or work when you’re self-employed.
So, I can always earn more money, but I can’t get that time back. This is why I’m making an effort to change my business. I want to be able to take time off more often without feeling so guilty. I don’t want to spend my whole life working, because all the time I spend working is time I can’t get back to spend with family and friends.
Because there’s absolutely no way to actually make more time, I think time is worth way more than money.
How to Start Valuing Your Time
Everyone’s time has value. No matter if you’re self-employed or “working for the man”. No matter if you earn 5 figures a month, 6 figures a month, or only a few hundred or $1,000 a month, your time has value. But beyond that monetary value, your time can have value in other ways too.
If you think beyond just the monetary value of your time, you’ll find that your time is just as valuable as someone who earns way more money than you. An hour is an hour no matter if you earn minimum wage or $1,000.
If you want to take back your time and start valuing it to the fullest, here are some tips to help.
Charge What You’re Worth
Even though I just finished saying that your time has value beyond just how much you earn when trading time for money, one way to start valuing your time more is by charging what you’re worth.
Before you click away, thinking, “How can I do that when I work for someone else?”, don’t! You can still charge, or at least ask, for what you’re worth.
Ask for a raise you deserve. Negotiate your salary when starting a job instead of just taking what is initially offered. If you freelance, use my script and tips to raise your rates. (Hint: you get this for free in my Resource Center when you become a VIP!)
Charging what you’re worth means constantly evaluating your worth. As your skills and experience increase, so should your earnings. Find a way to make this happen no matter your job or field. I truly believe where there’s a will, there’s a way. Find it!
Learn When Enough is Enough
Another way to start valuing your time is learning when enough is enough and when to say no.
As I said earlier, I’m working against my workaholic nature constantly. I also really love to help people, so I tend to say “yes” to nearly every opportunity that comes my way. This year, I’m trying to say “no” more often.
Say “no” when you don’t need more work. If you don’t truly need the money, use your time for something else instead. Remember, you can’t get time back but you can always earn more money later.
Say “no” to things you don’t really want to do. Use this time for friends, family, or yourself instead. Take time off to decompress, binge watch TV, or find another hobby you enjoy. Taking care of you and your loved ones is always a good use of your time.
Boundaries are important for everyone in your life, including your co-workers, boss, clients or customers, and even your friends and family. But setting those boundaries and sticking to them when you haven’t always done so can be difficult. I’m not quite finished reading Boundaries by Henry Cloud but, I’ve found it helpful so far.
Setting boundaries can help you get back your time, which we now know is the most important resource you have since you can never, ever get more.