Time vs. Money
My sister and I have an ongoing conversation about finding some sort of balance between work and life. In part it’s a matter of energy management – we both put a lot into our jobs and want to do our best, but when you come home and you’re too tired or mentally drained to do anything, it seems like there must be a better way. But there’s also the simple time factor – having more things to do than time to do them in. You have to make choices. This is admittedly far easier for me than for my sister, as I don’t have children. But at some point you have to look at your life and your to-do list, and just cross some things off. You can either decide that those things aren’t a high enough priority and set them aside them for that mythical “someday” when you will have all kinds of free time; or you can pay someone else to do them for you.
I was thinking about this the other day because I took two pairs of pants to the dry cleaners to be hemmed. I am perfectly capable of hemming the pants myself. I know how to sew. I have needles and thread and scissors and all the supplies I need. I don’t even need to drag my sewing machine out of the closet because the hem needs to be hand-sewn. And still, one of those pairs of pants has been hanging in my closet unworn for nearly 2 months, because when I do have free time, I don’t want to spend it hemming pants. Does it bother me to pay someone to do something I could easily do myself? A little. But it’s way better than the nagging sensation I felt every time I walked into my closet and thought “I really should hem those pants.” Plus, now I can actually WEAR the pants that I spent my money on in the first place.
There are still a lot of things I do myself that I could farm out – I haven’t started paying someone to clean my house, for instance, although I am frequently tempted. But I am trying to find a better balance for myself with this question: what’s more valuable right now, the time or the money? The answer is not always what you would expect.