Time Vs. Money: Which Would You Choose?

Time is money

Time or money, which would you rather have an abundance of? Would you prefer to have an infinite amount of time, or an unlimited amount of money? Of course money can provide you with things you may not be able to purchase with time. However, time affords you longevity and the ability to have time to do the things necessary to earn money. Sometimes I wonder why we choose money over time, or vice versa. I do believe that we all want to be comfortable and also enjoy life’s various pleasures. To a degree, having money provides us with the comfort that we all desire. But just imagine what you could do with an infinite amount of time. I think that the lives we lead are a constant struggle between valuing time or money. While some days we prefer to have more time, other days we prefer to have more money.

Many of us that lack an abundance of money spend our time in pursuit of it, or lament over the fact that we don’t have enough. Those of us with an abundance of money spend time trying to accumulate more, while also enjoying the comforts afforded to those with money. A small minority of people are content with their financial status, and focus on using money to buy more time. For instance, money can allow you to get back the time you spend on various tasks by employing someone else to do it. For this reason, some may say that having more money can lead to more problems.

Regardless of the category you fall into, your value system dictates your views on the importance of money and time. In addition to values, your personal circumstances exert great influence on your perceptions of time and money. Having responsibilities (i.e. family or financial obligations) only serves to heighten the intensity of the battle between the importance of money or time. The individual with no responsibilities is free to choose what’s best in terms of pursuing more time or pursuing more money. On the other hand, the individual with many responsibilities has a tougher decision to make. For example, should the focus be placed on time, which can be used to spend with family? What about the spending time to make money as a means of supporting family? This dichotomy is one that we will always be faced with.

In my opinion, taking the idealist perspective is not very beneficial. Instead, we each must assess our current reality and decide where the emphasis should be placed. At the end of the day, we will face the inevitable. Our time will eventually expire, and the money we have accumulated will not depart with us. Personally, I have reached a point where a balance has been achieved in terms of utilizing time wisely, while also managing to earn money to support my family. If you’re still struggling with this issue, keep this thought in mind. Money can be created, but time can only be gained or lost. Our time clock starts ticking from the day of our birth. We have no way of knowing when our time will be up, but it will, and probably sooner than you think.

Wake Up! MLK’s Dream Is Now A Nightmare.

This article was originally posted on another website, In The Black 2020. I wrote it around the time of the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial unveiling on the National Mall in Washington, D.C. The effort (led by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity) to erect a monument in Dr. King’s memory was driven by the desire to preserve his legacy and ideals. At the time, I believed the effort was a noble one. However, I also felt that “The Dream” as so eloquently depicted by Dr. King was a far cry from reality, especially in the Black community. Even today, I still hold fast to my beliefs about “The Dream.” But things can change through productive dialogue and collective action. Check it out and let me know what you think…..

MLK StatueOn April 3, 1968, a young, fiery Baptist preacher exclaimed, “I’ve been to the mountaintop!” At the time he was speaking to an audience in a crowded church about the struggles faced by the Black community. More specifically, his speech was highlighting the need for socioeconomic equality in response to the Memphis sanitation worker strike. His mention of the proverbial ‘mountaintop’ alluded to his vision of the future of Blacks in America, a future that he viewed as promising. A little more than forty years after that speech, the Black community seems to still suffer in ways that the young preacher could have never imagined.

It can be argued that since the abolishment of racial segregation, grand strides have been made in delivering socioeconomic equality and justice to minorities across America. This is made clearly evident by the recent election of the first US President with a direct hereditary link to the continent of Africa. The election of President Obama follows a numerous series of ‘firsts’ that Blacks have achieved in the post-segregation era. But despite the progress, the journey is far from complete and many battles are left to be fought.

If one were to take a macroscopic view of the Black community today, it would appear that the journey towards socioeconomic equality is complete. Blacks have been able to penetrate all aspects of American society, leading to the generation of a vast wealth, fame and fortune. They exist as leaders in elite academic institutions, multinational corporations, and all levels of federal government. In the entertainment industry, Blacks have single-handedly defined popular culture with their unique styles and sounds. The Black community’s greatest impact has been felt in the sports industry, where their presence and dominance have become commonplace amongst spectators.

Despite these numerous achievements, a microscopic view of the Black community would truthfully show how much regression has taken place since segregation was outlawed. The statistical data on education, imprisonment and unemployment paints a very bleak picture in relation to the Black community. Blacks maintain the largest percentage of those incarcerated in American prisons. With respect to education, Blacks maintain high dropout rates among students K-12 and are less likely to obtain additional education beyond a high school degree, when compared to Caucasian students. Black also occupy the highest levels of incarceration rates in America. Coupling these facts with the disproportionate rate of Black unemployment can lead to only one conclusion: We are nowhere near the mountaintop!

The young Baptist preacher, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., was just memorialized on the National Mall in the nation’s capital. If he were alive today, not only would he be disappointed in the $120 million dollar effigy, he would also be distraught by the current state of the community he and others fought tirelessly for. His vision for the Black community, better known as “The Dream,” has not been realized and instead has become “The Nightmare.”

In order to fulfill “The Dream,” the Black community needs to take a serious look in the mirror. Gone are the days of depending on government to solve the problems facing Blacks. The answer to the community’s troubles can be found within the community itself. The community needs to lead the charge in reversing forty years of regression, and focus on transforming its current state. With the vast amount of wealth and power that the Black elite have in their possession, there is no reason why the community should be dying a very slow death. From politicians, to corporate executives, and even athletes and entertainers, Blacks have amassed billions of dollars since desegregation. If just a small percentage of those funds were reinvested back into the community, the effect would be profound. Hopefully I’ll live to see the day when “The Nightmare” is over and “The Dream” has been fulfilled.

Africa’s Growing Middle Class

This article is a repost from a past contribution I made on In The Black 2020. The story of Africa’s growing middle class is still relevant today, especially considering the unique challenges that have arisen. Let me know what you think.

Accra MallA recent article in The Guardian highlighted a study from the African Development Bank, titled The Middle of the Pyramid: Dynamics of the Middle Class in Africa. The results of the study led to the conclusion that one out of every three Africans can now be considered middle class. As a business researcher and scholar, I found the results of study particularly interesting. With these results in mind, I think we can now call the American Dream the (insert your favorite African nation here) Dream. I think its about time that Africa is recognized for something more than a continent of hopelessness and despair. No longer should Africa be the place where governments and individuals seek to give handouts for tax breaks. Despite the fact that the continent has a long journey ahead, there are examples of prosperity across the board. Recently, Economy Watch named the West-African nation of Ghana as the fastest growing economy on the planet for 2011, with half of the top 12 countries on list belonging from Africa. Maybe with this type of news, the global media will start focusing on the numerous positive attributes of the Motherland instead of the negative stereotypes that have been portrayed for generations. I also hope that the government leaders on the continent focus on sustaining the growth of the middle class, instead of squandering opportunities due to greed and arrogance. If they were smart, they would concentrate on growing their small business sectors, butI’ll save that for another blog post. For now, we’ll just have to see what the future holds. Until then, Africa and her people should enjoy the ride.

Back To Blogging: Live, Inspire, Enjoy

Blogging Logo 1After a three year hiatus, I’ve decided that now is the time to continue blogging on a regular basis. When I created this blog, I was in the midst of preparing for major life changes. My wife and I were on the verge of relocating from the West coast to the East coast, a journey that would require us to complete a cross-country drive in three days. Also, I was transitioning from a career as an engineer to becoming a full-time doctoral student. Probably the greatest aspect of my changing life at that time was the upcoming birth of our first child. Needless to say, things were got crazy. As I struggled to adjust to life away from sunny San Diego (given the beautiful weather there, you too would have withdrawals), juggling my duties as a new father and first-year PhD student essentially killed off any free time I had for blogging.

While looking back over the past three years, I can truly say that those life changes led to a rapid evolution of my perspective on life and the world we live in. Gone are the days where I once denounced the “corporate drone” lifestyle and only encouraged entrepreneurial free spirit. The unique blend of capitalism and socialism in our society does require that someone starts the businesses that employ the masses. But, at the end of the day, we’re all occupying space on the blue marble (planet Earth) while trying to make a living and enjoy ourselves at the same time. My focus has always been on making a difference in the lives of others. However, I now concentrate my efforts on finding the right balance to be able to live, inspire, and enjoy simultaneously. It is always easier said than done, but I’m keeping my eye on the prize.

With that said, through blogging, I plan to continue influencing the masses with my thoughts, feelings and opinions on a myriad of issues. Hopefully you’ll follow along, learn something, and contribute to the dialogue along the way. Barring any other major life changes, you can look forward to my contributions to this blog on a more regular basis. That’s all for now. Until next time, live, inspire and enjoy!