Unlocking the Value of Your Time

Many of us entrepreneurs overlook the true value of our own time. Understanding Opportunity Cost—essentially, the value of what we might have achieved if our time had been better spent—can profoundly change how we allocate our time.

To get a sense of the monetary value of your time, start by estimating your annual living expenses. Calculate how much you spend monthly on essentials like bills, rent or mortgage, food, and business expenses. This doesn’t have to be rocket science – estimates are just fine here. Now, multiply this monthly amount by 12 to get your yearly costs. Next, divide this annual total by 2,080 (the magical number of working hours in a year, based on 40 hours per week over 52 weeks in a year). This will give you a rough estimate of your hourly rate. Good enough for our purposes here. 

Here’s an example: if your annual costs total to $104,000, your hourly rate would be $50 ($104,000 / 2080 hours = $50/hour). 

Next, examine how you actually spend your time by reviewing your Time Tracker. Identify the tasks that consume the most time (aside from sleep!). In my case, I discovered the important fact that household cleaning used to take up several hours each week. And for me, cleaning is not therapeutic. 

Additionally, consider the time you spend on activities that aren’t necessarily productive, such as scrolling through social media or email–your Time Sucks. For me, it’s newsfeeds. I love newsfeeds. But they suck up a lot of my time. 

Let’s break this down with specific numbers. Suppose you spend 3 hours a week cleaning and 5 hours a week browsing newsfeeds (like me). At $50 per hour, cleaning costs you $150 weekly, and scrolling costs $250. That’s $400 worth of time that could be potentially reallocated. Woah.

For instance, is it worth $150 to have a clean house every week? Could you hire someone to clean it for you for the same amount (or even less)? What if you arranged for a cleaner to come every other week, saving money and still reducing your workload? 

For the time spent on newsfeeds, consider if you could get the same information more efficiently, like subscribing to a daily email digest that takes only 15 minutes to read.

If you decide to hire a cleaner bi-weekly, you free up 1.5 hours per week for other activities. Reducing your newsfeed scrolling to 15 minutes a day would give you back 3.75 hours each week. Combined, these changes would give you over 5 additional hours weekly—more than half of a workday! Imagine what you could achieve towards your Goals and Vision with this extra time.

By placing a tangible value on our time, we can make more intentional choices about how to spend it. Let’s explore together how to optimize your time and move closer to your Goals.

Photo by iMattSmart on Unsplash

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