Money is Time

What are the only 99 things you can do with your money?

This is All What You Can Do With Money


What can you do with money?

Ask a simple questions, and most people say: “um, spend it, save it, and yeh…”

I want to get into the weeds on this topic, however. Let’s look at the only 99 things you can do with money.

Before you figure out what you can do with it, first off, what is money?


What is Money?

Money is deferred time. It is a medium of exchange by which time is stored.

Usually people say money is a medium of exchange for goods and services. Yes, it is that, but what it really is: Time. Money is Time.

Money is a mere commodity, which makes it truly fungible. It doesn’t matter how it was earned, where it came from, and certainly it doesn’t matter where it goes. Money is deferred time. As well all know: Time is Money.


Time Is Money

We all know the aphorism “time is money.” Nope. Money is Time.

This is an axiom, as if time equals money, then it necessarily follows that money equals time. Same, same. If A=B, then it is true that B=A.

Money is Time.

We all know that time is limited. Having more money at the end of your time really doesn’t mean much to anyone. Or, maybe, in fact, it really shouldn’t mean all that much.

What you do with your money when you have time is what matters. And there is is only one thing you can do with money.

So, what can you do with money?


What Can You Do With Money?

So, what are all the things you can do with money? Spend, save, invest, waste, tax, confiscate, deflate…

Well, as a commodity that represents stored time, the only thing you can do with money is to buy time.

Fundamentally, you can only spend money in exchange for time.

You can spend it now to save time, or you can spend it later to save time. That’s it. There is not 99 things to do with money (sorry for the clickbait title), there is just one. You can exchange it for time.

Let’s look how 99 things become one.

What are the only 99 things you can spend money on?

Current Spending

You can spend money now in order to save time. Think about this: what did you spend money on today?

Everything you exchange for money is in exchange for someone else’s time. That coffee: time to grow the beans, roast them, brew them and make the cup at the factory. You leveraged other’s time for that 5 bucks you spent at Starbucks.

What else did you spend today? See how it is all someone else’s time you bought?

Future Spending

You can save money, too. But that is just future spending. Anything you save today, you will spend in the future to leverage other’s time.

Charitable Giving

You can give to charity. Sure, that is so they can leverage other’s time to give to others. You are donating your stored time, not your money, when you give to charity. They use it to provide time to others.

Wasted Money

What about money that is wasted?

Are taxes wasted, or do you exchange that for the time for public services and roads? Certainly that saves someone some time.

What about late fees, overdraft charges, interest payments on consumer goods… Is this money wasted? Nope, that is your time, wasted.


The Usual Suspects: The “Usual” 4 Things You Can Do With Money?

Normally, folks say you can do these 4 things with money: spend it, invest it, give it away, or have it taken away (either through taxes, confiscation, or fraud).

Think about each one and you will see it is a transfer of your time to other people.

You earned the money through your time (and skills and/or knowledge, which took time to acquire). Sure, some skills and/or knowledge are more remunerated than others, but that is just because some time is more valuable than other.

In the end, all you have is your time. And it is limited. You can exchange it for money, or you can spend your money in exchange for time.

The missing ingredient? Leveraging other people’s time.


Time and Leverage

Even if it doesn’t take you any time to make money, it still is all about time. You leverage other people’s time to make money.

If you inherit it, is might be your grandparents’ time.

If you run a business, it is your employee’s time you are leveraging to make you money. You get a cut of the money they produce in exchange for their time. And all the supplies you buy in your business: you are putting them to a higher use than those who produced them can, leveraging their time in exchange for money.

And if you own property, you are providing a service that people value. They are paying you with their time.

The three ways to make money: employment, business, and real estate, all leverage time into money.


What Can You Do With Money?

In summary, the only thing you can do with money is spend it. You spend it now or later.

Money represents time, either your time or other people’s time you have leveraged. You spend money to buy time.


What Can You Not Do With Money?

They one thing you can’t do with money: buy more time when you run out. Time is scarce for an individual, but unlimited for us as a whole.

There will come a time when humanity ends, true. It happens for each and every historic human culture when resources expire. Till then, time is unlimited and so is money.

Distribution of resources, and thus time and thus money are not even. Read Guns, Germs and Steel to understand this point. Or Collapse if you want to see how societies choose to fail or succeed.

Meanwhile, money is just deferred time.

Money is Just Deferred Time

In exchange for your time, you get a meaningless piece of paper, or digits in a computer. This represents money. It is the sand in your hourglass.

All you can do is spend it.

Current spending: on things you “need” (that save you time instead of you doing it yourself), on things you “needed” (debt payoff on things that saved you time in the past), and on things you “will need” (future spending).

You can give to charity, which is things that other people need, needed or will need. You can give it to your kids: same thing! Or you can give it to the government to spend on other people (in order to save them time).

But you can’t not spend money. Your time is limited, so spend it to bring joy to yourself and others.

Find the only 99 things you can do with money: enjoy.

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