Time Budget

This is a short article about a concept that could have massive mind-hacking effects. Years ago, when I first organized workshops for my employer, I got a “time budget” of a specific amount of hours for preparation and execution of the workshop. First, I misunderstood the word “budget” and thought I would get an amount of Euros to spend on whatever. Then I realized that a time budget is the same as a money budget: There’s a certain amount of resource to reach a specific goal.

Jump to the present. Recently, I noticed that I formed a new habit. I often say to myself things like “The next appointment is in 30 minutes. This is my time budget. What am I going to do with it?” or “I now have 30 minutes budget.” This is de facto the same as “30 minutes free time” or “30 minutes to the next meeting”. But there’s a huge difference: Saying / thinking “budget” makes me see this amount of available time in a different way. I see it more as something I have, something I own, something I can use to my advantage. It’s not “just there” or not “just time”, it’s a resource.

This may sound a little silly, but the tiny change of thinking “budget” when I have time available makes me more proactive. Proactive is an important step to being successful, which makes me happy. Thinking “budget” instead of “just time” makes me happy. :)

Thanks again to Lisa for the lovely image! :)