eric kim photography - grandfather - black and white- ricoh gr1v - neopan 1600 - film-1

Your Only Luxury is Time

eric kim photography - grandfather - black and white- ricoh gr1v - neopan 1600 - film-1

Designer watches, bags, and cars — is this true luxury?

No. These are just false luxuries.

The only real luxury is time.

The only real luxury is freedom.

The only real luxury is your attention.

Avoid false luxury

Where do you devote your time, attention, and energy? Do you have freedom over your time, and what you decide to do and what not to do?

Most of us falsely think that luxury is having all this expensive stuff. But the problem is that owning all this fancy stuff makes us more of a slave to fortune. We need to get higher-paying jobs (which is often work we hate), in order to make more money, to buy more money. The higher up we climb in society, the more we need to consume, to keep up a certain “lifestyle”. The richer people we socialize with, the poorer we become. And the more miserable we are.

A simple question

Are you trading your money for more time? Or are you trading your time for more money?

The worst trade in life

I feel the worst trade-off we can make in life is trading our time for more money.

Time is the ultimate non-renewable resource.

If you lose $100, you can always earn another $100.

If you lose a year of your life, you can never “add” another year to your life.

Your life as a smartphone battery

Time is like a smartphone (without a charger). You start off the day with 100% charge, and as you use your apps, spend your time and day, you lose charge. And at the end of your day, you might only have 10% left. And you start to panic, and you stop wasting your smartphone battery on superfluous activities.

This analogy pertains to life. Except we don’t have a charger.

What isn’t important in your life?

If you knew that you only had 10% charge left in your life, what would you stop doing in life, and what would you start doing?

If I only knew that I had 10% charge left on my life, this is what I would stop doing:

  1. Stop worrying about money, and focus more on doing creative work that empowers others.
  2. Stop worrying or caring what others think of me; and doing work which I thought was truly valuable to others.
  3. To let all my loved ones know how much I appreciate them.
  4. To not waste a single ounce of energy regretting the past, feeling resentment, or negative thoughts.
  5. To not waste any of my precious mental energy on passive entertainment.

Of course this is just me. This will be different for you.

Life doesn’t have a charger. Never forget that.


Learn more: Philosophy >

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