Have you ever thought about how much time you spend purchasing and assimilating things you acquired into your life? It goes about something like this (and I’m not even talking cars or houses here): You need to buy / replace an item. This could be anything from a book, a shirt, a kitchen utensil etc. In some cases you might do research prior to starting the hunt, so you might browse the web, read up on it in Consumer Reports, etc. Then you get in the car, drive to one or even multiple store(s), browse the selection, figure out what you want, buy it, haul it home. Then you unpack it, you might need to read the manual/instructions, dispose of the packaging materials and find a new permanent place for it at home. Basically I’m talking about anything from the initial identification of a need to assimilating an item into your life.
On any given weekend, I may just buy 2 or so items that fit this bill, but I’m spending about 2 hrs doing so from leaving the house to coming back. Let’s say I spend another 20 mins or so unpacking and assimilating the items, so in total we’re looking at 1:10 hrs on average per item. That’s a LOT of time!
Now, follow me on this one: How many items do you own? Let’s break it down to an average of items per room, to make it easier. I’m not sure, but let’s say the average room contains 50-100 distinct items. In a 3 bedroom house with living room, family room, kitchen, garage, 2 baths, that makes 450-900 items, which equals approx. 525-1050 hrs (22-44 days!). So if you had to replace every article you own, you’d have to spend 1 month, 24 hrs a day selecting, buying and assimilating products!
I don’t know about you, but that’s quite a number. Don’t like my assumptions? Feel free to tweak the numbers and run through this exercise again and I bet you’ll still end up with quite an impressive amount of time.
Considering the sum of all the things we surround ourselves with is like a living organism which needs to replace all of its cells every so often, we are spending a lot of time maintaining and replacing our collective possessions on a permanent basis.
I guess, I wish I was Borg…