As hard as it is to believe, July is nearly over and “back to school” is almost here, and I’ve got a question: did you choose to spend time or money on family this summer? I get a lot of push back from people because I point out things like the importance of “time” instead of simply “things” in life, and while some people take me to task over it, it’s not exactly true.
You and your family should be able to enjoy the fruits of your labor! My point is far simpler: the “good” things in life aren’t really even things.
They’re time with those we care about, or time pursuing the things we want, or time to spend on tasks or hobbies that bring us enjoyment outside the office.
All too often, I see people using their hobbies (or those of their kids) as an excuse to buy far more than they need.
Yes, sometimes our hobbies simply bring us joy, and I’m all for treating yourself to them, but NOT simply for the sake of consumption.
Did you push the kid into travel ball, or are they excited by it?
Did you let Junior have a say in the vacation this year, or did you simply tell him (or her) “this is where we’re going, and you’ll have fun.”
Or, to look at it another way, if your kids of old enough to drive, how did you and the family approach the purchase of a car? Was there a frank discussion about depreciation, the long-term value of the purchase? The costs of ownership? Or did you just let Suzie go pick out her car and you stroked the check?
There are only so many summer vacations we’ve got them, before they grow up, and our goals should be to make them productive members of society, but also, to help them learn how to ask the right questions so they’ll become the best version of us.
Let’s get back to the real point of this post: Summer is rapidly coming to a close, and that means school will be back in session soon. Instead of worrying about money, this week?
Worry about time. Worry about how you can serve your family, not simply “buy” affection.
Take the family out to breakfast on weekday. Leave the office early and go to a movie. Invite them to meet you for lunch.
Quit confusing the importance of money with the far higher importance of time.
They’ll remember it far more than you might think.
All the best,