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  • Writer's pictureWarrick

Can you avoid selling your time?

Updated: Jul 25, 2020

And why do we insist on selling 8 of them a day?

Hello fellow Protagonists,

Are you up for something a little different today?

When did we all start viewing time like money?

"You owe me an hour", "You have wasted your time", "How do you like to spend your time?"

Time and money may not seem so far apart for many. I mean, we do sell our time for money after all.

I have started reading Bullsh*t Jobs by David Graeber. I kid you not adventurers, if you ever consider reading this book be prepared to be slapped in the face by your own brain!

This certainly is not a light read before bed and since I have started reading this book last weekend, I cannot stop thinking about our 9-5 (8-4 for me) working day.

Did you know that back in 1930, British economist John Maynard Keynes predicted that in the future (that's us now space people) we would be working 15 hours a week as technology would be so advanced that we would be able to do everything in less than half the time that it took back then.

What the fuck happened there John.

That would be fewer hours than the standard part-time job.

No, instead most of us are still selling around 8 of our precious hours each day, 5 days a week.

There is a problem with selling time and it is something all working folk must deal with because it is pretty much impossible not to sell our time if we are looking to earn money.

I watch videos of motivational speakers and rich millionaires (I mean they are sitting on the bonnet of a luxury sports vehicle to prove it) who advise us that we are making a great mistake by selling our time. That the secret to great riches is to no longer sell our time to another. I watched two of these style of videos this very morning whilst eating my Shreddies (other cereal is also available).

There is no way out of selling our time if we want to earn money.

I think the point some are getting at is to avoid selling our time for a consistent, flat rate like an hourly pay. This is because there are only so many hours in a day, so there is a cap on the maximum amount we could potentially earn each day.

On the other hand, creating something like a best selling book may mean that we invest 2000 hours into writing one for no initial pay, but over the book's lifetime we could end up earning far more (per hour) than we would have done in our standard 9-5 job.

People who have passive incomes like rented properties had to put the hours in to set their income streams up in the beginning.

The problem, but also the beauty, of time is that we all get 24 hours of the sweet stuff each day. This means that everybody has time to sell, the exact same thing.

This would be similar to us travelling to a market to sell and trade our goods, to find that everybody else has exactly the same sodding goods on their stands.

Go onnnn, I will trade you one of my strawberries for two of yours.

No wonder that time on its own is worth very little.

So it has to be about what we provide within that time, not how much of that time we provide. Quality over quantity.

"Manage your money not your time" - Tony Schwartz

Offering more time does not even provide better results. Studies have shown that people who work overtime suffer from drops in their performance at work overall and are more likely to injure themselves or make mistakes.

The reason that we settled on 40 hours in the first place is because Henry Ford reduced this from 48 hours for his car manufacturers and subsequently doubled the companies productivity over the next 2 years. So everyone else followed suit.

That was 100 years ago!

Not many things in this world last 100 years. Who is to say that 35, or 30 hours isn't the new 40. Shhh they are listening.

Lets take it one Buff step further; What if we just removed the designated hours worked each day completely from the formula for all jobs?

When we need an electrician for example, we let them know what job needs doing, we don't tell them "You know, just work 8 hours and lets see where we get". It might just end up taking 8 hours to re-wire a socket. Funny that.

From here my brain took a detour.

How about if we all had a system, like taxi drivers or bounty hunters do, where we worked for a company and jobs for our company came up on a monitor with a payment for its completion. We would select the jobs that we feel we could complete well and efficiently because this would provide the best rate of return for our time, or just allow us to select the tasks that we would enjoy more.

Then when we are happy with our pay for the day we just go home, whether it was 8 hours worked or 3.

Someone try it out and let me know. Maybe it does exist somewhere.

A strange mix of thoughts and rants today folks.

We all have time to sell so make sure that we focus on what we offer for each hour rather than how many hours we throw at something.

Here is a short read on an argument for a 21 hour working week - dream big (or small in this case)

Also I cannot mention the current book I am reading without showing some love - I do not make anything advertising it but it just wouldn't be cricket not to would it.



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