Yesterday I had a conversation with a son who needed to get something and I told him about a less-expensive place to purchase it. He said, “It’s not the money, it’s finding time to go buy it.”
His comment got me thinking about how it is either time or money that impact decisions.
Larry H. Miller was one of the wealthiest businessmen in Salt Lake, owner of the Utah Jazz and a chain of car dealerships. He died at age 60 of complications from diabetes. Those who knew him said, “He didn’t take care of himself. He was too busy taking care of everything else.”
People miss out on a lot because of those twin devils, no time or no money. Sometimes even life itself as in Larry’s case. He had plenty of money for medical care but neglected getting it due to lack of time.
When Larry Miller died the Salt Lake area lost a great and good man. He used his wealth to build the local economy, to bring a major NBA franchise to Salt Lake City, to donate generously to charity. The entire community felt the loss.
My husband’s brother also passed away from untreated diabetes. He was 56. Unlike Larry Miller, my brother-in-law didn’t believe he had much to live for. He wasn’t married, had no children, lived in isolation on an island off the Washington coast.
Once when my husband talked to him about his health, he replied, “Why worry about it? The Gowen men die young anyway.”
Their father and grandfather both died at age 60, thus his fatalistic attitude. He was resigned to the fact that his time on earth would be short so why spend time or money trying to prolong it? Being a self-employed carpenter with no insurance, this decision made sense to him.
Time and money are two huge assets bestowed upon us all in varying degrees and amounts, and learning how to utilize them effectively isn’t easy. Serious mistakes can be traced back to poor use of one or the other, and success is achieved by their wise use.
One’s perceptions about them are often based on emotions or prejudice rather than actual fact. And there are ways and means to accomplish goals without an abundance of either; like creative thinking, asking for help from others, and just plain old focus and determination.
Back when our children were young, my husband and I didn’t have much money. We wanted a large family, so we had one baby after another and money was understandably tight. One day my daughter commented that our family didn’t feel poor.
“That’s because we aren’t poor,” I said. “We make choices and live with them. We have what we need, who says we’re poor?”
She said, “Well, my friend Tara’s family eats the same kinds of food we do, like Toasty-os instead of real Cheerios and sometimes Ramen for dinner. Her mom says they have to eat that way because they’re poor.”
“Well, we aren’t poor. We eat Ramen because we like it. We eat Toasty-os because they come in a bigger bag and last longer and taste just as good.”
My daughter said, “That’s what I told her! But I just wanted to see what you’d say.”
Perception! Although time and money are tangible items, they can shift and move and turn into slippery creatures of one’s own imagination. They fascinate me.
Not surprising that they are recurring themes in my books. Choices made about time and money can change the course of a life. Such everyday, ordinary, basic elements of each person’s existence yet with such a powerful impact.
“Don’t say you don’t have enough time. You have exactly the same number of hours per day that were given to Helen Keller, Pasteur, Michelangelo, Mother Teresa, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Jefferson, and Albert Einstein.”~H. Jackson Brown
“Time is the measurer of all things, but is itself immeasurable, and the grand discloser of all things, but is itself undisclosed.” ~Charles Caleb Colton
“It requires a great deal of boldness and a great deal of caution to make a great fortune, and when you have it, it requires ten times as much skill to keep it.” ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
“The use of money is all the advantage there is in having money.” ~ Benjamin Franklin