Have you every caught yourself driving all over town to run one errand? Maybe you’re looking for the best price, or the perfect item, or the best combination of both. In this case, the time management and the money management part of our brains seem to be in direct conflict. If this sounds like you, read on…
Wasting time vs. saving money
I’m a huge bargain shopper. I never met a coupon I didn’t like. Because of this, I know what it’s like to become fixated on a discount. I don’t like paying more for something if I can get it cheaper somewhere else. It’s partly about the money, but it’s also because having the knowledge of a cheaper price and not using it bugs me!
But as you’re driving across town to save $5 on item, ask yourself: is my time worth more than that? How much extra time will it take you to go to that other store? Pretend that the potential money saved is an hourly wage you’re paying yourself. Is your time worth more than that?
The hunt for perfection
Our extended errands don’t just apply to searching for a bargain. Sometimes we run all over town looking for a perfect item when “good enough” would be just fine instead. Either way, we end up sacrificing our precious time without really thinking much about it.
The next time you find yourself embarking on a string of errands that seems to be taking too long, ask, “What else could I be doing with my time, and is that thing worth more than looking in one more store?”
Sometimes you may decide that the discount or perfect item really is worth it, in which case, a little extra planning can save a lot of time. Maybe you can wait a day or two and combine it with another trip in the same area of town. Either way, make sure that you take the value of your own time into account. It’s one of the most precious resources you have.
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