The Real Value of 5 Minutes

August 2, 2014
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“A little time can help you to make a great impact, therefore you should never despise a few minutes.” – Israelmore Ayivor

5 Minutes. Three Hundred Seconds. One Twelfth of 1 hour. It doesn’t sound like much does it?

We’ll I have news for you – 5 minutes are invaluable when it comes to your health and building wealth.

A recent study as reported in the Journal of American College of Cardiology found that people who ran or jogged for as little as five minutes a day lived three years longer than non-runners. Let that sink in for a second. 5 minutes per day of a healthy habit can add years to your life.

The consistent, accumulated compound effect of 5 minutes of a healthy daily activity can make a profound positive impact in your financial life. It’s true that health and wealth are unique to each person. However, the both are deeply impacted by science, math, time and personal factors within our own control.

Let’s explore how your financial life can be significantly improved in 5 minutes per day:

1. Spend 5 Minutes Per Day Reading and Growing Your Financial Intelligence

If building wealth is a goal, then developing a habit of studying wealth building should be front and center. Reading for 5 minutes per day will allow you to complete one book every two months. After two years, that will be 12 new books that your have read. As Charlie Munger said, “I’ve known no wise person over a broad subject matter area who didn’t read all the time – none, zero.” After two years, your will have read more books on personal finance, investing and wealth building than the average financial service professional.

The sooner you learn financially intelligent lessons, the lower the costs in terms of your financial mistakes. Contributing regularly to your financial education will compound your financial intelligence just like how running for 5 minutes per day adds to your health, vitality and longevity.

2. Spend 5 Minutes a Day Finding Ways to Save $5

$5 per day probably doesn’t sound like much but this is the “Latte Factor” as coined by David Bach. There is a reason why Starbucks is wealthy and you may not be. They are accumulating your wealth building soldiers. Every dollar that leaves your pocket for consumption removes  $5 per day at 5% interest over 40 years is $232,000.

Keep in mind that you could invest your savings to pay off high interest rate debt or earn even great rates of return than the 5% we illustrated. Eventually, you will be able to increase your $5/day savings to $10, then to $20.

3. Spend 5 Minutes Per Day Reviewing Your Financial Goals

Imagine if you and / or your significant other sat down each day and discussed your financial goals and had a real conversation about money. Many people avoid these conversations all together because they are complex and emotional subjects. It’s far too important to ignore. Money problems (or communication problems surrounding money) are one of the biggest contributing factors when it comes to divorce. Think about how your relationship with your significant other could improve by talking about what really matters to you and your financial life.

Staying present to your goals will allow you to adjust and adapt to the inevitable curve-balls that will be thrown your way. It will help eliminate the big surprises and help your proactively prepare for all that your want to accomplish.  If your and your loved ones are prepared for the changes before they occur, your will be in a strong position to handle them and benefit from them.

4. Spend 5 Minutes Per Day Organizing Your Financial Life

A great many of money problems are caused by disorganization. Your may be one of the many people with retirement accounts and savings accounts strewn about at different places – from old 401(k)’s , to investment accounts at different brokerage firms to multiple bank accounts at a multitude of banks. Spend some time consolidating your accounts and find a service that will allow your to view them in totality. Automate your savings and your bill payment so your financial life can be operating no matter where you are or what your are doing. Spending a minimal amount of time organizing your life, will allow your to spend the rest of your life doing what’s most important.

There your have it. In 5 minutes per day, that’s it,  you can dramatically improve your financial intelligence, save hundreds of thousands of dollars, improve your relationship with your loved ones and money itself, accelerate your progress towards reaching your financial life goals and increase the amount of time you can devote to the things your actually value the most.

It’s been said that that time is money. But I side with Jim Rohn: “Time more important than money. You can get more money, but you can’t get more time.” Spend your time wisely.

Action Items:

  • Schedule 5 Minutes In Your Calendar – A recurring appointment – for you to dedicate to improving your financial life.
  • Pick one book to start reading incrementally – 5 minutes a day.