Investors who read this site know that I am obsessed with Time, Freedom and Happiness. I believe that in order for one to be happy, one needs to be autonomous and in control of their time. Money is just a tool to get you there. Money is just part of the equation. It helps you achieve financial freedom which then free’s up your time to do as you please as you no more have to actively work for money.
Yet many people mistakenly think money in itself leads to happiness. They just want to accumulate more and more of it. They don’t understand that money is a means to an end, not the end itself.
Below are a few articles from around the web I came across recently on the topics of money, time, freedom and happiness. Enjoy!
Time Over Money = Happiness
My colleagues and I have conducted survey and experimental research with nearly 100,000
working adults from around the world. Across studies, we find that the happiest people prioritize time over money.
Importantly, the benefits of choosing time over money emerge for the wealthy and less wealthy alike. Even spending as little as $40 to save time can significantly boost happiness and reduce stress. Our research suggests that even small actions—like savoring our meals, engaging in 30 minutes of exercise, or having a 5-minute conversation with a colleague (vs. focusing on work) can significantly shape happiness, more than most of us predict.
Despite this, most people continue striving to make more money. A key challenge to reducing feelings of time stress and increasing happiness for a broad range of the population is psychological: most people erroneously believe that wealth will make our lives better.
Roy has calculated how much profit his business needs to generate in a year to cover his living expenses and fund his personal investments. Anything beyond that amount has negligible impact on his life and happiness. As soon as he’s earned that amount, he packs up. Instead of chasing the next dollar, he’s chasing the next wave.
Jarvis argues that we’ve walked ourselves into a trap by holding onto two sacrosanct beliefs: 1) bigger is better and 2) growth at all costs. Our insatiable desire for more income may keep us motivated to work longer or to work harder, but it misses a bigger question: What is that next dollar worth to you? And when the answer becomes, “not much,” then why shouldn’t you take a three-month vacation?
Vicki Robin, the author of Your Money or Your Life calls this freedom “time sovereignty.” In theory, money can buy you time but ironically in many Western countries, people with higher incomes are likely to spend more time on stressful activities such as commuting and are more likely to agree with statements like, “There are not enough minutes in a day.”
Free time Is The Ultimate Success
Why do we work so much? I know the answer is “money,” but why? Yes, we need to cover our cost of living — your true basics like food, clothes and shelter. But after that, what are we working for?
The short answer is luxury. We want to get our hands on some luxury.
But that shouldn’t be the reason for our lifetime of toil. It should be for time. You see, time is the true measure of success — the real currency of an entrepreneur.
We should be yearning for free time to do what we want, not what we must. We should want time to do the things we like, not the things we dislike. Forget the desk job. Forget cleaning the house. Forget mowing the lawn or cooking dinner. If you don’t like it, the luxury of having extra money should eliminate it from your life.
The Time-Money-Freedom Paradox
This relationship is often paradoxical in the western world: Most of us use our time to make money. We exchange our time for dollars, and in doing so, we are limiting how much free-time we have, in favor of money. Time becomes money…. and usually not enough.
To escape it, it’s critical to find ways to make money without trading your time for it. Money can sustain you while you exist in your free time, and also lets you outsource time-intensive responsibilities. By creating money without trading time, you aren’t bound by the confines of trading time for money, because you aren’t trading anymore, and so there are fewer limits on how much money you can make. From that extra money, you can then buy more free time by outsourcing time-intensive tasks like grocery shopping or maintaining your business.