Wednesday, October 5, 2016
Time or Money?
More Time or Money? Your Choice the title of an article in the September 11, 2016 edition of the New York Times got my attention. The article starts with “Given the choice between more time or more money, which would you pick?” Two professors, for a research project, put this question to more than 4000 Americans of different ages, income levels, occupations, and marital and parental status. Initially, they found that most people valued money more than time with 64% of 4415 people surveyed. Further, they asked those respondents to report their level of happiness and life satisfaction based on money or time. Their findings were that the people who chose time more on average, were statistically happier and more satisfied with life, than with people who chose money. They also asked these respondents to report their annual household income along with the number of hours they worked each week to measure really how much free time they had available. The researchers reported that even when money and leisure time were held constant, the respondents that chose time over money were still happier. They concluded that taking two people who were otherwise the same, the one who chose time over money would be happier than the one who chose money over time. This research supported a decision that I made in the late 90s regarding having more time for my interests versus continuing to make money? I chose time over money and moved to the Sierra foothills. I was then able to continue competing in Ride and Tie [an equestrian, and running event held in the mountains] and ultra-endurance running. I now had the time to pursue my passions and did. I completed numerous ultra-events such as the 100 mile, one day Tevis Cup endurance ride; the 100 mile one day Western states endurance run; and the 100 mile one day Swanton Pacific Ride and Tie. I also wrote two books -It Has Nothing to Do With Age and Bo’s Warriors published by Winter Goose and Triumph Books, respectively. The first book had to do with men and women 65 years of age and older who were still competing athletically in various ultra-physical events. Some were friends that I met while competing . In my second book, I interviewed mentally tough University of Michigan football players who transformed Michigan football, along with their legendary coach legend Bo Schembechler. In fact, my wife and I just returned from Ann Arbor where we attended tailgating with the players before the University of Michigan- Penn State game now coached by Michigan’s Jim Harbaugh. Without a doubt, I am happier now compared to when I was working as a practicing psychologist. Moreover, in my books and in my competitive running ultra-events, I continued to utilize various psychological principles. In my first book, I prescribed seven principles to lengthen one’s life and health span. Making money was not one of my seven principles. Such things as attitude, behavioral decisions, and finding your passion were paramount. In fact, a healthier lifestyle leads to happiness while money does not. Further, creating a state of happiness is much more than time or money. As far as time goes, it is what the individual does with available time. I agree that time is just one of the ingredients in the pursuit of happiness.