I’m back after not posting a blog entry since March. Yikes! With a cup of rewarmed coffee by my side, I’m now feeling the necessary inspiration to get back after it.

On June 25th, I turned forty! In recognition of this milestone, and to challenge myself to keep writing regularly, I’ve decided to cover 40 things that I’ve learned in my first 40 years. So, between today and my 41st birthday, I’ll be sharing one topic roughly weekly. With 43 weeks until then, I’ll need to be pretty damn consistent!

Here are some things to note about this series:

  1. I will not be over doing it in the editing department. Please expect and forgive some spelling errors, run-on sentences, and occasional poor grammar.
  2. The topics will run the gamut – From serious to ridiculous. From life to running. From beer to leadership.
  3. Some will be a few short sentences. Others may be novels. Who knows.
  4. You will likely agree with some things and disagree with others. At the very least, I hope to leave you with something to ponder.
  5. Please share with others if you feel the urge and feel free to share your comments below.

That’s all you need to know for now. Shall we get started?

1 of 40…

What’s more valuable to you, time or money?

My answer to this question has meandered over the years. At 40, I’m confident that I’ve settled on my answer.

You see, I make less money than I did a year ago at this time. A fair amount less. This was never my plan. My plan was to have the trend line of the income graph continuously soar to the upper right. But guess what? It hasn’t, and I’m far happier and certainly finding more purpose in life.

The trade-offs

I’ve traded dollars for time. In exchange, I’ve also reshaped my use of time.

I’ve traded a 90-minute daily commute for the ability to have breakfast with my family and digest dinner at a less frantic pace.

I’ve traded time in airports for time at my sons’ respective schools.

I’ve traded wedged-in lunch meetings in an overcrowded schedule for volunteer opportunities.

I’ve traded time worrying for time doing – doing more of the things that align with my life’s purpose.

Don’t get me wrong, money is a wonderful thing and necessary tool for this life. I have nothing against money or even making lots of it. Money can do incredible things for ourselves and others.

86,400 seconds

I recently wrote the following reference I saw on LinkedIn on a whiteboard at my workplace, “Each day we get 86,400 seconds deposited into our account. How we spend it matters. Spend wisely.” A colleague of mine named Andy commented that the reference to a bank account was fine, but flawed. He was so right.

Unlike money, we can’t save any of those daily seconds that we are blessed with. We can only choose how to most wisely spend. Time is so valuable because it is limited, and it cannot be banked in the hopes of earning interest.

What else?

A few other points to think about:

  • It takes time to make money. It’s hard to argue that the opposite is true.
  • The most underestimated component of negotiation is time. It’s often far more important to get the deal done in a timely manner rather than perfect the terms or exchange of value.
  • Time is the greatest of equalizers. Each day, we all start with the same opportunity. What we make of it is our choice.

Takeaway 1 of 40

I’ll leave you with one my favorite mantras from the author Dr. Richard Carlson –

“Life isn’t an emergency.”

Savor your time. Spend it wisely, kindly, and generously. You can’t take any of it with you at the end of this journey. And unlike money, you can’t leave any of yours for your survivors.

Speaking of time…  I believe it’s beer 30 🙂

Enjoy today,

~ Mark


I’m continuing to stay free of Facebook and Twitter — it’s not a judgment, just a way of me choosing how to use my time! Again, I have nothing against either social media platform and all of you who are actively engaged. Due to my lack of presence on these platforms, please feel free to share on my behalf. Thank you! 

1 thought on “1/40: Time Over Money

  1. Spot on. My journey is similar. Last night I came across a letter from my dad with some sage advice. This was probably written about 5 years before he died. There are about 30 pieces of advice prior to this so I’ll pick it up towards the end. “…Work for peace, keep contact with your relatives, give to charity and perform good works, help wounded animals, have good times with your friends. Do less of what you want to do and more of what you should do. Keep it up and you realize you don’t have time to work!”

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