The relation between Money, Time and Happiness

Table of Contents
The relation between Money, Time and Happiness

Work and Wealth
How do you evade this situation?
Buying Time Facilitates Happiness?
Finding Balance

As I grew older, I come to realize that perhaps, time is money and money is time.
The fact is that money is a “repository of value,” but what does that imply?
It’s a record of past labour – time that you have exchanged for money. Indeed, money is a repository of time.
Now, after making this assertion, I’ll acknowledge that time and money isn’t the same.
Money is a repository of time, without doubt, but some distinctions exist between the two concepts.
For example, time is limited.
In a matter of minutes or a few days, it’s irretrievable.
Like a flash, it’s all gone.
Unlike time that has a direction, if you squander a penny, it’s always possible to obtain another.
Time is a flow concept, and money is not.
Above all, the time has a limit; money doesn’t.
Hypothetically, your wealth and income have no limit. On the contrary, everyone has roughly eighty years on this planet.
The lucky ones stay alive for 1000 months, and only the favoured few stay for 5000 weeks.

Work and Wealth

When I started exploring the relationship between money and time, I started to think that wealth is not about having enough money, but about having enough productive time.
Indeed, you can acquire more time if you have more money.
The notion of having enough time drives the popularity of the Financial Independence movement.
Financial independence, being financially self-sufficient where you’re no longer compelled to work for money, ensures that you can spend your time as you want.
Virtually everyone wants to have “Freedom.” The freedom to do what they like, and when they wish.
However, a competing desire to this is our desire for material wealth.
With a higher standard of living, the level of spending increases, which drives us to work harder to fulfill our lifestyles. This chains us to our workstations, and Financial Freedom gets harder to reach.
We sacrifice our freedom for material wealth.
It’s a tight situation. To buy things, we work for money. Since you possess so many things, you need more income; meaning that you need to put in more effort in your work.
It is as if the more material things you have, the less time you have.

How do you evade this situation?

There are two ways: Live More or Spend Less.

The first common way to free yourself from this predicament is to determinately decrease spending so that it’s not above the level needed to sustain your living.
Parsimony is the key to liberty.
When you reduce your livelihood, funding it only takes less time.
If you’re making a $50,000 yearly income and spend it all, you leave no error margin.
If anything goes awry your business goes awry, inflation increases you’re in a jam because you don’t catch the opportunities that come your way!
But when you reduce your expenditures to $40,000 yearly, you offer yourself alternatives.
You can decide not to overwork yourself today, utilizing the time-saving privilege effectively.
You can decide to continue making $50,000 and see the difference, creating a repository of time.
Also, reduced spending helps finance your future.
Adapting to live with a “lesser” livelihood implies you need not save much for retirement.
For instance, your target falls to around $1 million per year when you reduce spending to $40,000, unlike when you expend $50,000 every year, you are required to save about $1.25 million before you retire.
It requires less work to finance an ongoing livelihood of $40,000 per year, while a livelihood that costs $50,000 yearly requires more.
So if you’re lucky to be in the position where you can cut your living from $120,000 to $40,000 per year, you can genuinely slash the time you spend on work.

Buying Time Facilitates Happiness?

What if you like your livelihood and don’t want to cut down? Or what if you cannot cut down?
There’s always a way to use the connection between money and time to improve your well-being.
An engaging article had it that: “buying time facilitates happiness.”
The writers conducted several practical studies to observe the relation between the notions. Their conclusion? A rise in wealth caused an unexpected consequence an alarming manifestation of time famine.
To combat this time scarcity and promote happiness, you can refer to the evidence of using money to get the time we provided.
Utilizing money on time purchase can protect you from the terrible impacts of time scarcity on your life.
If you want to enhance your life quality, don’t use your money to buy things; wield it to alleviate time famine. Rather than spending on a luxurious mansion, buy time-saving aids. Get a cook or a housekeeping service.
The impacts of “purchasing time” have an incredible effect on people without much money.
The writer states: “we perceived a stronger relationship between purchasing time and life enjoyment among less affluent individuals.

Finding Balance

One of my most significant insights on the relation between money and time is this: When you reduce spending, you can cut work.
In a practical sense, parsimony buys time. But on a higher level, parsimony brings about freedom – financial independence, and the freedom to use your time as you please.
When you view time as money and money as time, you can reasonably calculate how to spend your hours and dollars.
When you understand how valuable your time is, you can know when it’s necessary to seek jobs.
You need to decide on the amount of time you’re ready to spend on immediate satisfaction and how much time you want to secure.
I think there’s no single straightforward answer to this situation.
How about you?
What are your insights on the notion?
Do you have some experience from your own life of purchasing time to enhance your satisfaction?
What balance have you attained, and how did you make it there?



Jun Sing Tan

I help young adults and working professionals achieve their financial goals with a full suite of risk management and wealth accumulation solutions. I firmly believe that financial education should be easy and achievable for all. I am committed to service and hope to be your one stop financial solution.


Jun Sing Tan

November 21, 2020