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You Can’t Level Up Without Being a Little Selfish

What do you think? Are most people simply passing time, or are they trying to get the most out of it? It seems that much of mankind is some combination of busy, bored, and distracted for most of the day, but not very intentional about growing into the best person they can be. At work, they’re busy doing whatever the job requires. Outside of work and in their free time, they’re running errands, doing chores, or entertaining themselves. Leveling themselves up seems to be a lower priority.

The OECD created a breakdown of how people spend their 24 hours each day based on data from working-age people aged 15 to 64 in 33 countries. On average, sleep consumes 8 hours and 27 minutes. Leisure activities and external demands on time, such as work and family matters, consume another 14 hours and 39 minutes. That’s the lion’s share of the day, and it means most people simply don’t allot much time to personal improvement. In fact, activities such as exercise and education take up a mere 48 minutes of people’s time on average. (Data source: OECD Time Use Database) A lot of them spend more time than that stuck in traffic every day.

If that looks anything like your daily schedule, maybe it’s time for you to start being more selfish. Selfishness is not necessarily bad. At Bounce Pep, we define selfishness as time spent solely on your own improvement for reasons that have nothing to do with other people’s wants or demands on you. In other words, it's time you spend to level yourself up for your own reasons. Training at the gym, reading, and taking courses are good examples. You do it for your own improvement, and any benefit to others is merely a by-product.

Working, doing chores, eating, spending time with friends and family, and relaxing are not bad or unproductive uses of time. We all do those things. However, avoiding stagnation and mediocrity requires that you examine your priorities and take time to do things that move the needle in your life. Imagine the transformation you could experience by doubling those 48 minutes of exercise and education to 100 minutes or so each day. It may seem like a big change, but you’d still be giving 90% of your time to everyone and everything else. So go ahead and be more selfish.

Sayonara until next time.

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