Time, money, and all those other things I don’t have enough of...
October 17, 2014
It's not too late for YOU […] besides which people can be in general pretty well trusted, of course--with the clock of their freedom ticking as loud as it seems to do here--to keep an eye on the fleeting hour. […]
Live all you can; it's a mistake not to. It doesn't so much matter what you do in particular, so long as you have your life. If you haven't had that what HAVE you had?
Henry James, The Ambassadors, Chapter 5.
I wish I had more time. It’s that simple. But things - you know, sleeping, eating, commuting, general life - always seem to get in the way. It’s a struggle for emerging actors and companies; just how much time do you dedicate to your creative baby?
If you’d asked me what I wanted more of as a teenager out of money and time, the answer would have been simple: money. Money represented a kind of freedom, an independence for it to be Christmas and your birthday every day, to travel to far-flung places and to pay for the expensive seats in the theatre.
And whilst money is still partly the cage to rattle against (trying to find free rehearsal space, to pay actors, venues, rights, whilst not charging an exorbitant ticket price is a stress which all new - and established - theatre companies struggle with), I find increasingly that instead of a jangle of the last bit of change in my purse bothering me, now it’s a clock, ticking loudly in my ear.
It’s a long commute for me at the moment (2 hours, twice a day, 5 days a week), which has driven home just how valuable my time is. Money can be won and lost, gained and spent. But time can only be spent. No matter what you do, time just keeps ticking ticking away through your fingers.
Maybe this is a little depressing to some. But it was incredibly freeing for me. Realising without a doubt what my most valuable currency was to me allowed me to make much smarter choices.
Yes, there is logic to saving for a house with a white picket fence, but there’s login too in spending money on seeing productions and art which inspires and adds to your creative knowledge and well-being. You can’t measure this in the same way; there’s no formula for the interest accumulated, there’s no figure for the return of investment. But that doesn’t mean there isn’t an incredible value and benefit to spending your time this way.
We have a pretty good idea of how much money we have sitting in our bank account, but we have no idea just how much time we have left. So spend your time wisely, spend it creatively, and above all, spend it on something you truly enjoy.