Time Is the Only Real Wealth—So Stop Wasting It!

Time is a valuable commodity—and one we can't get back. Improve your overall life satsifcation: Stop wasting time and spend it instead on meaningful pursuits that make you happy!

| October 2012 Web

In her book You Can Buy Happiness (and It’s Cheap), Tammy Strobel combines research on well-being with numerous real-world examples to offer practical inspiration on voluntary downsizing and how to create a life that’s more conscious and connected, sustainable and sustaining, heartfelt and happy. The following excerpt is taken from chapter 8: Time Is the Only Real Wealth.

It was a cool August day in Lake Tahoe, and my mom and I were sitting on the beach reading. She was leafing through the latest issue of a real estate magazine, and I was reading a book called Curious? by Todd Kashdan. I turned to my mom and said, “This is incredible!”

My mom slid her sunglasses down the bridge of her nose and asked, “What’s so incredible?”

“Well, according to Todd Kashdan, most people spend less than 20 percent of their day engaged in meaningful work or activities, like talking with close friends, making love, or just playing.”

My mom’s mouth fell open. “That’s shocking! It makes me wonder if people have fun anymore.”

It turns out that a number of researchers have asked the same question. For instance, in 2007, Princeton economist Alan Krueger published a fascinating paper called “Are We Having More Fun Yet?” Over the past ten years, massive technological advances should have given people a vast amount of newly free time. According to Krueger, that’s not the case. Americans feel they still don’t have enough time to engage in meaningful or challenging activities.

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