How Money Can Buy You Time…And Happiness

September 5, 2017
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“Time is more valuable than money. You can get more money, but you cannot get more time.” – Jim Rohn
Have you ever considered hiring a personal chef, a nanny, maybe even a housekeeper or even someone to run errands for you?

A recent study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has demonstrated that spending money on time-saving services makes us happier in our day-to-day lives. It was conducted internationally on both men and women and took data about their spending habits and their life satisfaction. Those in the study that spent money on time-saving activities, such as paying people to clean or cook, reported greater relief and happiness. This was true for people across all income levels. The assistant professor at the Harvard Business School and the lead author of the study, Ashley Whillans, stated, “People who spent money to buy themselves time, such as by outsourcing disliked tasks, reported greater overall life satisfaction.”

Next time you’re feeling a bit tight on time, try buying your groceries through Amazon Fresh, hiring TaskRabbit to do a few things around the house or maybe even getting a virtual assistant from Upwork. These small trade-offs between spending money and freeing up time could make a big difference in your life.

Some people are reluctant to spend money just to save some time. As financial life planners, we wouldn’t be reluctant to do so. After all, we want you to get the greatest return on your life. It’s important to know what your time is really worth. Have you ever quantified that for yourself? “If there’s some task that just thinking about it fills you with dread, then it’s probably worth considering whether you can afford your way out of it,” stated Elizabeth Dunn, Professor of psychology at the University of British Columbia. Now that you are a thinking about it, what parts of your life could you get a great return on your time?