The Value of Your Free Time

A few months ago, I lost my job of 14 years. It was devastating not because of the financial loss, as I did receive a severance that helped me get by, but because suddenly I was free… and I had absolutely no idea what to do.

The first week I wandered around. I had nothing to do, nowhere to go, and no extra money to do anything to lift my spirits. Wake up, get coffee, go back home. Fix lunch, watch TV or play games. Fix dinner, wait for primetime TV. Repeat, repeat.

But one day, I decided I was going to do something productive. I always wanted to write a series of books for children, so I gathered my ideas and started. I don’t consider myself a very good artist, but I started drawing again and learning to draw cartoons and illustrate. I formed these habits and this became my daily routine (although the other parts were still there).

Now, almost two and half months later, I found a job. This will get me back to earning money, but now, I have a much greater appreciation for my time. Time is money, or so the saying goes.

When you work to earn money, you give up the most precious thing you have: your time. You can never replace this; once it’s gone, it’s gone. Now when I buy or pay for things, I am going to take a few moments and think about what I’m buying, and what it costs me.

I really don’t care that much about “stuff”, but there’s always a worry about how I can live without it. I suppose that is one of the hardest things to overcome with minimalism. If you get rid of everything, one day you find yourself buying the same thing because it turns out you need it.

From this point forward, I am training myself to be positive, more frugal, and make every bit of my time count. I don’t want to write children’s books; I AM going to write children’s books. As a friend told me recently, make a decision and go forward with not with “I want”, but “I am going”.

Say it with me: I am going to….




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