The Investment of Time

Investing Your Time

timeOne of the greatest lessons in time management is to realize the difference between spending time and investing time. The dictionary defines spend as “to use up, exhaust, consume.” If you spend, you have no return. On the other hand, when we invest we “spend with expectation of some satisfaction, of obtaining an income or profit.”


With respect to time, many people spend far more than they invest. Most of us spend inordinate amounts of time engaged in frivolous activities that do little or nothing to propel us toward our life goals. For some reason, we don’t value time as we do money, electricity, food, or even paperclips. Most of use are trained not to waste paper. We turn off lights, so we don’t waste electricity. Yet we continue to treat our time—precious moments of our lives that can never be relived—as if we had an unlimited supply.

Too often we spend our time doing what someone else wants us to do, or we do things that seem urgent rather than those that are really important. As a result, many unimportant tasks get done in a thorough, timely fashion, while important activities get hastily done under crisis conditions. Time is like money. You can expect dividends if you wisely invest it and losses if you spend it frivolously. Time reflects who you are. It indicates what you think of yourself and others, and how focused you are in achieving the goals you have set for yourself. Orchestrate each day of your life to achieve a high level of performance and satisfaction personally and professionally. Align your activities with your personal goals and with the goals of your organization.

Tammy A.S. Kohl is President of Resource Associates Corporation. For over 30 years, RAC has specialized in business and management consulting, strategic planning, leadership development, executive coaching, and youth leadership. For more information visit or contact RAC directly at 800.799.6227.