I was inspired to write this piece from a YouTube video sent to me called “The time you have (in jellybeans)”, which has had almost four million views. It highlights in a very concise manner the limited time we have available and how we spend it without even realising it. I’ve since identified a number of ways to ensure we make the most of the time we have left!
Here’s the transcript, along with my comments attached. Let’s call the transcript (YV) for YouTube Video, and my comments (JW), some of which are slightly whacky and confronting.
YV: From age 15 onwards, we will be asleep for 8477 days, if we are lucky, some of that time will be next to someone we love.
JW: Enjoy bed time more than ever before. Go buy an awesome comfy bed and don’t skimp. Make it a king size. Get hot sheets you’re proud of, I’ve got leopard ones. Go to Peter Alexander, who understand pyjamas with hot sales assistants. Buy heaps of cool pyjamas, Ugg boots and dressing gown. Nothing is comfier.
JW: If the person next to you isn’t right for you, do what 50% of the population do. Find someone else. It’s not worth sleeping next to someone incompatible or heading that direction. Scary thought, huh. Second time round you’re a 70% chance to change once again. I’m just passing on the maths. Love is not unconditional, so I’ve learned. Choose who you sleep next to. It’s a long haul flight.
YV: We eat, drink or prepare food for 1635 days.
JW: OK. You have 2 choices. 1) Save time preparing food or get someone else to prepare it for you so you have more time to do other things. Eat quicker or eat in good company. Eat good food, tasty food when you have time, or make the time. Buy the nice tomatoes, not the cheap ones. Make a conscious effort when shopping, cooking, eating, along with the venue and accompaniment. At least make the experience ‘conscious’.
YV: You will be at work doing something hopefully satisfying for 3202 days.
JW: Please don’t be miserable at work and don’t complain because I’ll ask you to tell someone who cares. Make work life satisfying; this is in everyone’s power. The short-term pain is worth it.
YV: You will have 1099 days spent commuting to work or travelling from one place to another.
JW: Get Spotify in your car or on your devices and have a great sound system. Don’t skimp on cheap headphones. Make sure you have access to great tunes or books wherever you go. Chat to the person you keep staring at on the train or tram. If you drive, enjoy your car if you can. Get it cleaned more regularly if it makes you feel good and make it like your second home. Buy fluffy dice if it floats your boat. Make travelling fun. Don’t listen to ads on radio.
YV: You will watch TV in one form of another 2677 days.
JW: We now choose what we watch more than ever rather than being forced to watch the Sunday night movie. Watch what you want to watch and don’t compromise too much watching shows you despise as the life will be sucked out of you. Buy a kick ass TV or home projector you are proud of. I have a projector screen so my son can watch Peppa Pig on a movie-size screen. It’s awesome. Get a subwoofer. Great sound helps make the experience even better.
YV: You will spend 1576 days doing household activities, chores and shopping.
JW: Life is better spent elsewhere. It’s like being the janitor for your office building for 1-2 hours every day after work. You don’t do it at work so why should you do it at home. Because ‘she’ says so? Sorry. Shop online or make it snappy. Get a cleaner. Keep things tidy but accept non-perfection around the house. I’m still very clean, tidy and organised and eat well. Shop in shops you know are good. Don’t waste time meandering in boring shops. If you shop with your kids in the trolley, make them laugh and run really fast down the aisle backwards. Buy them that toy and tennis ball set they want occasionally. Line up at the check-out chick/dude of choice and make them smile and say thank you. Put charity money in the dog. Try a new item in the supermarket you wouldn’t normally buy. Try buying bread from a bakery rather than buying bread at Coles. Stock up on liquor that tastes good. Get a 15 minute Chinese massage before you enter the supermarket to mentally prepare.
YV: You will care for needs of others i.e. friends and family for 564 days.
JW: This should be a special time not a chore. Make it special and engage and focus your energy during this time. Make them feel special.
YV: You will spend 671 days bathing and grooming.
JW: Not sure if this was averaged out for females vs males. Get awesome soap and shampoo, like the ones you get in five-star hotels, not the discount packs. Buy awesome towels and bath mats. Chuck out the towels that barely cover your bum. Get a heater in your bathroom. Use top of the range hair product. Put things on the wall in your bathroom rather than a plain boring bathroom. Make it a special place. Take more baths. Try a new hairstyle.
YV: You will spend 720 days doing community and religious activities including charities and taking classes.
JW: I’m not a religious man but I am a proud Jew and practise in my own way. Growing up, though, I preferred to play sport on Saturdays. Are you going through the motions and being forced to do religious activities or do you truly believe? I practise being grateful, thoughtful and act within a strong value system with consideration for others every day. Charitable activities are a personal thing and will make you feel great the more you do for others.
YV: After what remains, the time we have left for laughing, swimming, making art, going on hikes, reading, sending text messages, reading, playing softball, learning how to play guitar, checking Facebook. What are you going to do with this time? How much of it do you think you’ve already used up? If you only had half of it, what would you do with it, and what if you only had half of that? What would you do differently?
How much time have you spent worrying instead of doing something that you love? What if you only had one more day? What are you going to do today?
JW: This sums it up. Focus on what ‘is’ not what ‘was’. Have no regrets. We have limited time to do the things we really want to be doing after taking care of all the other activities. This takes planning. Have a clear plan which you review regularly. What is it you want out of life? What’s on your bucket list across every aspect of your life? What’s the vision you have for you and your family? Write it down. Take time to look at it and review it. Do things with the people you have planned to spend it with.
You will notice how many things you start doing by choice until you come up with more things you want to do. And you will start living with clear purpose and actively pursue those things with intent. When opportunities arise, you will see them clear as day and snap them up – but not by chance. You will laugh and smile a whole lot more and live a more fun and meaningful life.
If you are serious, you will print this out and remind yourself every month or quarter to review this. Use your jellybeans wisely!