• Anita Vandyke

Are you wasting your life?

Updated: May 18, 2018

I want you to look at your pay check and calculate your hourly wage. This is how much your time is worth in an economic sense. I want you now to think of all the things you do without pay, house chores, child-rearing, grocery shopping, watching television, cooking and cleaning. These are the lost, unpaid hours. Some of these unpaid hours are crucial to living a healthy, normal life, but in reality, too many of us spend those lost hours mindlessly consuming - we are wasting away our lives.

I want you to do a quick exercise and calculate how many hours a week you spend passively consuming, rather than actively creating. These include activities such as browsing shops, mindlessly surfing the internet, watching hours of reality television. Most people spend 2 hours watching television to relax after a busy day at work, then on the weekends spend 5-6 hours browsing shops or passively consuming television. That’s 20 hours a week of lost hours!


Now I want you to write a list of all your goals - big goals, small goals, ones which you have never accomplished because you “never have enough time”. I have always wanted to learn another language, learn how to sew properly, learn how to bake – but I always thought I never had the time. Imagine if you replaced your lost hours with active hours. Ones in which you are doing, creating, making or learning rather than passively consuming. You see, we all have 24 hours in a day, instead of saying you don’t have time for these goals, try saying they aren’t a priority – see how that feels.


These lost hours can be used to do so many things, more than just achieve fun hobbies. How many times have we said we don’t have time to exercise, we don’t have time to cook, we don’t have time to live a more eco-friendly life. In fact, we do have the time, it’s just not a priority. I challenge you to make it a priority, instead of losing those ‘lost hours’ to more television, more shopping, more emptiness, I challenge you to fill it with something nourishing, fulfilling, something worthwhile of your precious time.


It’s time to be creators rather than consumers. It’s time to be active rather than passive. It’s time to make ourselves, our friends and family and our planet a priority. It's time to live a truly zero waste life.


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