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Oct. 6, 2017

9. The 20-Hour Pair of Jeans

How many hours do you work for each of your impulse purchases? How about your unnecessary luxuries? Are you fully aware of how much time it REALLY takes you to afford these? Every time you buy something, you invest your life (the time it took you to earn them). Start making changes so you can claim back and free up hours in your life.

How many hours do you work for each of your impulse purchases? How about your unnecessary luxuries? Are you fully aware of how much time it REALLY takes you to afford these? Every time you buy something, you invest your life (the time it took you to earn them). Start making changes so you can claim back and free up hours in your life.









Would you work 20 hours to get a pair of jeans? I asked this question to one of the young adults I was working with at a runaway shelter many years ago. I was working on my master's degree in mental health counseling and psychology, and I worked with the kids who were in the Addictions Management Program and some of the kids with anger issues. One of the kids I was talking to this day was telling me his troubles, how he didn't have enough money to get some cool stuff for his girlfriend and then have some fun outside as well. I asked him, he said, Well, tell me something. You got some nice new jeans there, I see. Yeah. He said, You five finger those? That meant, Did you steal them? I said, No, Mr. Wade, I didn't steal them. Okay. Are there any sales going on? No, Mr. Wade. Okay. How much do those jeans cost? Jeans cost $100. Okay. How much do you make per hour? Think the number was somewhere around six and a half, seven dollars an hour, whatever it was. This was quite a few years back, about 20 years ago. Okay, well, how much do you actually make after tax?


And we figured that it was about $5. Again, I'm rounding it to make life simple here. So I said, Okay, so if you make $5 an hour, how many hours does it take you to get a $100 pair of jeans? Oh, man, Mr. Wade, I said, Yeah, you just work 20 hours, dude. It took you your entire week just to get your one pair of jeans. You had no money to take your girl out. You had no money to buy other cool stuff. All of this for this pair of jeans that you didn't even really want in the first place. I heard him talk about the jeans before how he didn't really like the jeans. He thought they were a a cool, he wasn't sure, but it was almost on a dare like, Well, you can't afford those jeans. Well, I can afford those jeans. Okay, so basically, you just spent 20 hours of your life on something you really don't care about that much. You got no money to get roses for your girl. You got nothing else going on. And all of that is because you weren't clear about what you most wanted.


So what I want you to think about is, what are your $20 pair of jeans? Not your dollars, but the hours. What are the things you're buying costing you in time? And so this is one of the things that I was able to make a connection with years ago as I was studying so many different authors, everybody from Henry David Thoreau, the dude who went to Walden and just lived deliberately in the woods, and reading books like Die Broke and Live Rich, and so many other books I read, and just trying to get a sense of, Okay, what is it that I'm really trying to do? And how much time does it take? So as an entrepreneur, if I can make a certain amount of money, I simply need to make enough money to afford my lifestyle. Once I can afford my lifestyle for the month, I don't need to work anymore. But every purchase I make that I don't really need means I usually have to work more time. Now, if you've got truckload of money, it doesn't matter to you, then cool. But a lot of us, we say, Okay, wait, I make a certain amount of income per month.


So after that, I've got to really hustle for stuff. And in addition to that, most people, as small business owners or entrepreneurs or even employees, usually there's a certain amount of money that we can make pretty easily. Either if you're an employee, maybe it's the amount you already get paid. It's your salary versus, let's say, sales commissions. If you're an entrepreneur, maybe it's your steady your business that you know you can bring in a certain amount. Then after that, you really have to hustle. It might only take you 20 hours a week to maintain your steady business income if you're a solopreneur or an entrepreneur or a small business owner. But if you go a lot above that, then now you really got to start hustling and working way extra hours. When you look at any expense, when I look at a car payment, I don't see, let's say it's a $500 car payment, I don't see $500. I see a certain number of hours. When I used to make $25 an hour, I saw a $500 car payment as 20 hours of my time. Now, depending on what you make, it might not matter.


If you make $500 an hour, you might say, Wait, that's an hour of my time for my car. No problem. It all depends where you're at. But the question becomes, do you really want to invest that amount of time? And you start realizing very quickly that you do have a limited amount of time. There's only a certain number of hours available to you simply to live. And in addition to that, if you're operating at a certain level of income, a fixed type income, or an income that doesn't change very much, once you go beyond your expenditures, once you go beyond what you're making, now you're building up debt and that debt is earning interest. And sometime in the future it's going to steal time from you. So in all of this, I want you to just start considering when you're looking at that purchase that you're not sure about making, how many hours is it going to take you to earn that and do you really want it? And if you start thinking about this with every purchase you make, especially the big ones, the house, the car, it's so easy to get so caught up in, I want this and this is the greatest car and this and that.


But as somebody who routinely keeps cars for usually at least 10 years, I can tell you, the sexiest thing about a car, to me, is no payment. That's awesome. When it's working and there's no payments, and of course, it's kept nice and it's kept clean, but no payments are awesome. In all of that, I encourage you to look at your expenses and see what it's costing you in time. Each one of your expenses, let's say you use Quicken or one of those softwares to track where you invest your money, look at those and don't just look at my expenses cost me this amount, look at it, is it worth it? If you make $10 an hour after taxes and that DVR feature cost you $10, okay, well, that's an hour of your time. If those premium cable channels cost you another $50, that's five more hours of your time. If you go to happy hour and you get three drinks for 30 bucks, that's three hours of your time just to get those three drinks. Now, I'm sorry if that creates a buzz kill for you. That might just take away all the effect of the three drinks.


But overall, just look at when you're making a purchase, does it represent what you want to invest your time in? People say, Time is money. Well, the verse, money is time. So making sure that especially when you commit to longer contracts such as home or loans or car loans, that you're getting involved in something you really want to commit to versus saying, You know what? I'm not sure. Maybe I'll rent it for a little bit. Maybe I'll try it and see if I really like it. Or maybe I'll get a lease of a car at a smaller amount, see if I really like it. Maybe I'll rent that car. I thought I want to drive this certain car. Maybe I'll rent it for a weekend. And even if it costs a little bit for the weekend, I'll see, do I really like this car that much that I'm willing to invest this much all the time just to have that. I hope this serves you. I hope you start seeing things like the dude in the Matrix, NIO. When you start seeing things, I hope when you see things, not only do you see the price tag, but you also see the time tag.


What is it going to cost you to afford the things that you most want. If you'd like a tool that can help you do this, you can go to 4day tools. Com. That's the number 4, d aytools. Com. On there, there's a time to money calculator as far as your labor. It'll help you look at how much time is it costing you to own or to purchase or enjoy the things you most want to invest in. I hope you find that helpful. If you really enjoy this, make sure to let your friends know about this. If you haven't already, subscribe to the audio or the video of this, depending on how you listen to this content. As always, I look forward to helping you make more money in less time, doing what you do best so you can create your four day work week lifestyle or whatever lifestyle you'd like to enjoy your friends, your family, and fun more often. Thank you.

Wade GaltProfile Photo

Wade Galt

Author, Podcast Host & 3-Day Weekend Coach for Entrepreneurs & Employees


With over 30 years of experience working with entrepreneurs, I teach fundamentally sound strategies to help people Make More Money… In Less Time… Doing What They Do Best.
• I help Employees, Entrepreneurs & Business Owners create a sustainable 3-Day Weekend lifestyle.
• Insurance Agency Owners follow my strategies for sales process implementation plus recruiting & accountability enforcement.
• I've been a successful software company founder and owner for over 20 years.

I help people connect with the divinity within, so they can
1. Receive Guidance and Support from the Divine to Create the Life They Most Desire
2. Love Themselves the Way the Divine Loves Us
3. Love Others the Way the Divine Loves Us

I've led retreats and personal growth workshops, authored numerous books on spirituality, personal growth, finance, parenting, business growth & more.

Pulling from 15 years' experience as a productive employee and over 15 years as a software company founder & owner, corporate consultant, sales process implementation coach, accountability expert, recruiter of superstar talent, provider of mental health counseling (psychology) services, life coach and 3-day weekend entrepreneur - I teach others to create the life they most desire personally & professionally.

As a former Fortune 50 corporation software project leader and sales & management trainer, I've been a lifestyle solopreneur since the year 2000.

I have a Bachelor's Degree in Marketing from Auburn University, a Master's Degree in Mental Health Counseling Psychology from Nova Southeastern University, and have earned the CLU & CPCU professional insurance industry designations. I also successfully qualified to be a Certified Integrative (Life) Coach with the Ford Institute.


I enjoy 3-day weekends, Friday's at the beach playing volleyball with friends, + weekends with my family.

My family and I have enjoyed living ocean-side in North America and South America while creating books, software and coaching programs to help fellow entrepreneurs.

I live happily with my wife, children & dog.