Saturday, 3 March 2018

How to get an extra 425 hours a year

An interesting advert rolled down my Facebook page yesterday and immediately caught my eye. Beginning with a question, it asked me what I would do with an extra 425 hours a year. Now for those about to reach for the calculator, that equals 17.7 extra days in the year or 2.5 weeks. Not bad for any holiday really. But there was a catch (why is there always a catch?)

In order to receive my extra 17.7 days I had to buy a driver-less BMW! Yes, you've got it, my highly anticipated extra vacation was going to be spent travelling to and from work, and spread out over the existing year. I was not going to gain an extra 425 hours but apparently free up 425 hours that I was using inefficiently. So the question changes a little to be, "What would you do with an extra 425 hours a year, if you were only able to take them a couple of hours a day and while sitting in traffic in an over priced automobile?" Well, I suppose I could prepare myself for the meetings that await me,
organise my emails and return my messages. I might do some forward planning; I always find that works best if I am in a relaxed state. Maybe I could check Facebook and even start a Pinterest page and pin vacation spots. "Oh, what a waste of time?" you say and you're right. I could start an online course that would see me in a better position to apply for that other position, you know the one? That one with a wider choice of driver-less cars so I can really stand out in the crowd.


Just as I was reaching for the cheque book I realised the best way to save that time was not to go to that job. Simple really. And this is the line that divides them from me. I choose to live within my means. I already have the 425 hours extra and a lot more because I don't have to work the hours required to buy the bloody thing in the first place. What's more, I am home for my children and PRESENT for Franny. (Why don't we value this time the same way we value the 9-5 hours?)

There is a way to free your time and make it yours but it isn't by buying a driver-less BMW. It's by taking time to reassess your path and eliminating everything that robs you of tomorrow. Those things that you just had to have yesterday that now demand you work tomorrow to pay them off. I know people that bought a new big screen T.V. to watch their team play in the grand final. "It will be worth it when they win!" But they didn't and now it will take 3 years to pay it off.

If we really understood that money is an exchange of our time, perhaps we would operate differently. How much would it cost the person to travel to be driven to work? If during the interview he was asked, "Are you prepared to spend 17.7 days of your life per year to work at this company?" Perhaps he would have reconsidered. Yet the equation is the same for those of us still driving ourselves to work.I know another person who travels 2 hours a day to attend mixed shifts, some only 3 hours long.

Life will begin to change when we refuse to give our tomorrows to pay for our yesterdays.


  1. ANother very thoughtful post - thank you. The last sentence is particularly piercing!
    J x

    1. That lad of mine can sure write a wonderful post!

  2. What an interesting perspective. I believe that the older we get, the more we value time. I used to waste time having a lie-in at weekends. Now this is a rare occurance.

    1. This comment has been removed by the author.

    2. Yes, it's always so quiet and peaceful when you rise earlier.

  3. I learned that lesson (and so many more)from the book 'Your money or your life'.
    ~ skye

  4. After our youngest went off to college, my husband and I empty nesters. We put the house on the market and down sized to a house five minutes from work. I saved the 30 minute commute to and from work and go home for lunch everyday. I have an extra 10 hours a week! And I save on gas, eating out (used to go 2-3 times a week), and I no longer go shopping on my lunch break (used to go on bad days-retail therapy?). Best move ever!


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