Save. Spend. Splurge.

The Hustle Economy we live in

We will willingly live farther in the middle of nowhere, with an hour commute just to have a bigger home.

We easily give up that 2 hours a day, stuck in traffic / driving like a maniac just so we have the dream place we want.

Why not turn it on its head and consider the time we are wasting in commuting, as being valuable?

10 hours a week is 40 hours a month. That’s a full-time job for a week, that you’re spending in a car, inhaling fumes.

Our time seems to be so undervalued that we will also drive 15 miles to get to a cheaper gas station to fill up, but we won’t spend that same amount of time trying to increase our own salary by practicing negotiation tricks.

We will save a “ton” on groceries which is great, but have wasted hours and gas by going to various stores, but we can’t spend the time comparing stocks and funds and figuring out what makes sense to meet our goals.

We will even try and fill those blank hours when we are not making money or side hustling by trying to find more ways to make money and to “make every hour count”.

I’m growing increasingly jaded about this entire Hustle Economy we have built around ourselves and the pressure to do and make money every second. If you aren’t making money, it’s like you’re a loser.

Stopping to smell or appreciate the flowers? No time for that, pay someone else to do it for you. 😛

I hear quotes like:

If you see me less it is because I’m doing more.

I’ll challenge that — are you really doing more?

By whose standards?

By giving up your social connections? By not “wasting” an hour talking to your friends or family?

By skipping out on family or other events to save money AND to make more money?

What for?

It is so easy to waste time because we value it so little. We think money is more important but it is truly easy to make money. That gets refilled. Time, doesn’t.

Consider your time as more valuable than money

It is okay to say — I’m taking this job closer to my home for LESS pay, living in a smaller apartment that costs more than if I lived farther away, but being able to live happily and comfortably without wasting my time or my money.

As a consultant I really feel this – traveling and commuting is one of the biggest reasons why I quit as an employee. I just couldn’t handle the constant travel and everything surrounding it.

It isn’t and wasn’t glamorous no matter what anyone tells you. Having to be at an airport 2 hours before your 6 a.m. flight is hell.

Having to fly the red eye on Thursday night so you can be home on Friday is tiring.

Your weekends are shot, and on Sunday night you’re back on the plane again or dreading that 4 a.m. start at the airport.

I felt every one of those hours and it is why I’m perfectly OK saying no to contracts that are too far from where I live and would be a 45-minute commute, or saying no to anything that requires out of city travel.

It’s also okay to pay someone else to do things for you, so it frees up your weekend and you don’t need to clean or even cook – that’s why eating out is such a big thing with me. I get to try various cuisines on a whim, any time I want, just with money.

There is more to life than money. It’s time.


  • Marielle

    I agree with your post 100%. People value money more than time and then complain that they’re having no time.
    I left my job in the City ( London /UK ) after 15 years, took a year off, had my 3rd child and decided not to go back to my job. Family and friends could not understand my decision. All they saw was that I rejected the chance to earn £££. They never thought of the 48/52 hours week or the 3 hours daily commute. All they saw was the money I was giving up. They couldn’t understand that I wanted time with my family, especially my children as they were all under 10 at the time. For info, I do not regret my decision and I’m now self-employed. To get “more money”, I’ve taken the plunge and started investing ( thanks to your very detailed posts on investing that I now know by hard, as I read them so often ).

  • Catherine Truong

    Agree with all your points. We all have different priorities, at different times in our lives. I think the important thing is to regularly questioning and interrogating our priorities to understand our WHY, and make sure that WHY is in line with our values.

    It can be easier to “parrot” others and adopt their life plan for prioritization if we see those individuals are successful. But only you know what your situation is.

    For me, I prioritize my time, and I am able to do that by living within walking distance to my work and daily services/amenities. I can walk to get my groceries, and I am close to a few outdoor trails – this aligns with my current priorities. However, when and if my situation changes, then I’d want to re-evaluate – if my work location changed – then my situation may no longer serve me.

  • Gail

    . I did learn to change jobs, and we continued to move for my husband’s job. I found that this practice as well as willingly moving once to another country added to my life in several ways. Seeing new scenery and learning history of new places, adding new people to think about in my inner landscape, learning new systems, etc., all add dimension worth much more than the comfort of familiarity. We did stop moving suddenly when he stayed in one city for his work, and I missed the days of drawing red circles around the neighborhood to find a new school for me not to have to commute to. But we moved within the city, and I did learn to change jobs and enrich my experiences, and even make a few life-long friends and at the same time reducing driving and time away from home and family.

    • Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

      I love that you drew red circles around neighbourhoods to match up to schools you could teach at 🙂 That is so practical. I really dislike commuting, so working from home these days has really made me more insistent that it is possible in a company and I should push for it more.

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