I just wasted 20 minutes shredding paper.
It was worth every ‘wasted’ second!
Is it high value time? Not really. There are more pressing things on my list today.
Did I blow my planned time budget? No.
Can someone else do it for me? Sure, I could take it to Staples or UPS to shred or hope to find a community shredding event.
However, I’m glad I did myself because:
-I got the idea for this article to remind you that spending time on a ‘low priority’ activity can yield a high return.
-My shred pile is gone. (Yes, I know I tell you not to have one but that’s because I see the one you already have is over 18” tall—and growing.)
-I ‘saved’ a lot of time and redundant effort by not packing it up to drive someplace else to be shredded, not to mention the chore it is carrying it to the place to dispose it.
-I ‘saved’ money and space. Mobile shredding services are efficient and economical if there is enough shredding to warrant the minimum cost, but if you don’t produce enough your time and space economy is lost.
Sometimes the best use of your time, like money, is to blow it on something that’s not a priority or a need. It frees your mind from focused tasks and demands. It gives a little spark of abundance, especially when time and money are tight.
Mastery is keeping your balance between destroying your time and money plans and giving yourself a much-needed break from the disciplines of focused work and highly structured financial plans.
No one can refute the logic of drinking homebrewed instead of purchased coffee as an answer to how to pay the rent when money is tight or when saving for a purpose. But if the cup of Wawa coffee buys a smile and eases you into a better frame of mind and more productivity, then the annual $500 cost is a bargain.
Cost versus benefit. Your time and money. Your criteria.
Mastery is taking a minute to acknowledge that the relationship between actions and attitudes, cause and effect, or accounting and emotion can be nebulous, but real.
Mastery is understanding that your relationship with time, money and the other *schtuff of life might not work for someone else but does work for you. It’s being intentional and deliberate with your resources and accepting the consequences of your actions and attitudes.
So go ahead: shred those papers and clear your mind and your desk, and maybe even enjoy a cup of coffee while you’re at it.
And when you're finished there, join me for Minutes to Mastery: How to Organize Your Papers Like a Pro! In this 2 part online class you'll learn what to keep, what to toss, what to shred (and what not to), and the tools you need to be your own version of Professional Organizer.
*Thanks Pop, for putting your own stamp on an ordinary word like stuff