April 3, 2022

Things in Life Worth Investing in: Put Your Money Where Your Time Is

Eric Bank
Former Citadel Director of Business Analysis

“Money can’t buy happiness, but it can make you awfully comfortable while you’re being miserable.”  —  Clare Boothe Luce

I hope most of you aren’t miserable, but the advice is spot-on: Spending a little money on comfort can make a huge difference in your daily life. The corollary is to spend money on items that occupy a good deal of your time now and will continue to do so in the future. Here is a list of seven everyday things that merit some extra spending:

  1. Mattress and Pillows: You spend about a third of your life in bed, so purchasing a terrific mattress and pillows is easy to justify. Going for a top-of-the-line product gives you a better chance of starting each day well-rested. You can spend a couple of thousand on a great mattress but be aware of the enormous markups on these items. Do some shopping around and testing before committing to a purchase. 
  2. Sheets and Blankets: A good mattress deserves good bedding. High-thread-count sheets are a must. If you don’t mind a few wrinkles, you can go with cotton, but synthetics might be cooler. If you live in a cold clime, pop for the best electric blanket you can find.
  3. Eyeglasses and Contacts: Your eyes are open during the other two-thirds of your life when you aren’t sleeping. Pamper them with sharp lenses that let you focus for reading, computer work, and distance. Consider ones that darken in bright light and pay for replacement insurance in case they are lost or damaged.
  4. Office Seating: Many of you work from home, which often means hours in front of a computer. Pick out a comfortable office chair that fits your body. Many folks like chairs with wheels, so you might also invest in a glass chair mat for carpet or hard floors. A good chair can last a lifetime, so don’t skimp on function or materials.
  5. Computer: The other half of the work-from-home equation is to splurge on the best computer gear you can afford. Many folks like to have a desk model and a laptop that remain in sync. Get the highest speed wifi available, and consider dual displays if they would benefit your work. 
  6. High-Def TV: With two zillion channels at your disposal, your TV undoubtedly occupies much of your time. The main unit should be big, with high resolution and great sound. Consider secondary sets in the kitchen, bathroom, and other places around your home.
  7. Travel Mug: If your lifestyle includes many cups of coffee daily, buy a high-performance travel mug that doesn’t spill and keeps the brew piping hot. It will be your constant companion, so make it happy by feeding it top-quality roast from your own espresso machine. Those can cost $1,000 or more but think about how much you spend at Starbucks each year. ‘Nuff said.

Take the time to work out a budget that leaves some money for important everyday items. Remember, money comes and goes, but time is forever. Spend money on the things that occupy your time, and you’ll never regret it.

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