The Beauty Of Enough

Most of us are billionaires who squander our most precious asset – time.

Time billionaires are commonplace. Despite what people think, Baby Boomers aren’t our wealthiest citizens.

Young people with little to speak of regarding financial assets have something nonagenarians Warren Buffet and Charlie Munger can only dream about. Ninety years of compound interest provides no match for the superpower of future time.

Graham Duncan explains the math.

A million seconds is 11 days. A billion seconds is slightly over 31 years. . . . I feel like in our culture, we’re so obsessed, as a culture, with money. And we deify dollar billionaires in a way. . . . And I was thinking of time billionaires that when I see, sometimes, 20-year-olds—the thought I had was they probably have two billion seconds left. But they aren’t relating to themselves as time billionaires.

Too many of us fritter away hundreds of millions of precious seconds on trivial pursuits instead of savoring the present moment.

We keep moving the goalposts to find happiness in things rather than connections. This behavior is understandable with the near-disappearance of former institutions that held us together. Houses of worship, Unions, and local youth sports, to be polite, are trending down.

Keeping up with the Joneses, owning the biggest Yacht, or delaying happiness into an unpredictable future never works. All the money in the world can’t quench a never-ending search for consumption. It’s a bridge too far.

Temporary happiness fades fast. Soon it’s on to something bigger, better, younger, and prettier.

Rinse and repeat.


Sahil Bloom puts it all together in his excellent post for Free Press, The Time Billionaires.

It’s natural, but it’s a dangerous game—one that we will lose. . . eventually.

We waste a lot of energy on the past and future when the present is all that’s guaranteed. We push for more—but really, we need to find our enough.

Never let the quest for more distract you from the beauty of enough.

We must value time over money because things are replaceable; time is precious.

Assuming we have unlimited present moments creates a dreadful decision-making tree.

Time with family is a short-term asset that needs maximization of the moment, not distraction by the screen.

Don’t believe me?

Take a look at these graphs for a dose of cold reality.

You might not realize it now, but the road from Kindergarten to College is way briefer than you think. The same goes for the lifespans of aging parents and other members of your extended family. As the years pass, you’ll likely spend unimaginable time alone. Don’t occupy this space with what could’ve been. Regret breeds in solitude.

We all live on borrowed time, and the interest rate is punishing.

Life has scanty guarantees, but one thing is almost inevitable for readers of this post. Whether you like it or not, you will run out of time before running out of money.

Keep that in mind in your decision process.

There are no do-overs for regret and time.

Choose wisely.

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