Understand the Value of Your Time


Time Management Part 1

Pride nurtured by apathy is the root of poor time management skills.  Being habitually late or constantly double booking yourself shows lack of concern for other people and for yourself.  Not only are you burning bridges with people, you aren’t accomplishing your dreams.

Some of the best advice I received was from an engineering professor at Michigan State University. He admonished us to “always know the value of your time – and don’t waste time.”

When my professor gave me that advice, I calculated what I could earn as a Mechanical Engineer after graduation. That revelation caused an immediate behavioral change.

The value of your time may or may not be what you earn per hour at work.  15 years ago, the first time I got paid to be a key note speaker at a banquet, I earned $500.  Keynotes are typically 45 mins so that made my hourly wage nearly $670/ hour.  Since then I’ve earned more as a keynote speaker.  Although, I don’t make thousands of dollars per hour every day, I do bring the value of my time to every hour of the day.

I plan all my time. I plan time to dream, create, work, build relationships, play and time to do NOTHING. It’s been at least 20 years since I’ve woken up and wondered “what am I gonna do today?”

I am in no way suggesting you spend every minute of your life trying to make some outlandish hourly wage.  I do suggest that placing a value on your time gives you a perspective. “Time is Money” a quote by Ben Franklin, is an American concept.  Ben Franklin lived a very productive life. He knew the value of his time.

Finally, knowing the value of your time gives you an appreciation of other people’s time. Don’t waste your or other people’s time.  People who are flaky or habitually late, don’t keep close.  And don’t be the flaky or habitually late person.

Part 2 will discuss how to manage your time better.  Part 3 I will share some of  the tools you can use to manage your time.

Do you know the value of your time? How do you determine the value of your time?

3 thoughts on “Understand the Value of Your Time”

  1. I try to value my time. I split it between the two big things in my life: my family and my writing, and try to view both from a long term perspective. For example, yesterday was a snow day for my daughters. I had planned to write for a few hours that afternoon, but I took a look at the day and decided to spend a while teaching my daughter how to do a book report. Those hours were an opportunity to do what I usually don't have time to do during the normal school week, and I felt that it was a good investment of energy. I still had an hour or so to write in the evening after she went to bed.

    So while I usually plan my time carefully, I sometimes have to change plans when an opportunity arises, especially when the opportunity means a pay off in the future. My daughter had an opportunity to learn and I got to spend a while with her.

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