(L30) How Much Is Television Really Costing You?

How much money won’t I have at age 70 if I keep watching TV? Is TV worth this?

For the past week, each day I have recorded the amount of time I have spent watching television. I had estimated that I would be watching around 15-20 hours of television a week; the total ended up being extremely close at 15 hours and 2 minutes. Now to calculate how much money I would be losing in this time, I decided to multiply 15 hours (a week) by 4; this left me with 60 hours a month lost to television. I then plugged this information into a compound interest calculator at $1200 dollars a month (assuming I would be making $20 an hour at the very least running my own business), with 53 years to grow at a 10% interest rate. (I am 17 years old right now, so in 53 years I will be 70 years old. Because the compound interest calculator does not accept $0 as a current principle, I was left to enter $1.) At this rate of television viewing, by the time I am 70 yeas old, I will have lost $22,355,756.67! Now that is a lot of money!

Exercises like this help people such as myself realize how valuable time really is, and more specifically, how much downtime will cost you in the long-run! Who needs a few hours of relaxation every night if you can spend the better portion of your life relaxing because you spent those extra hours working. Television is absolutely not worth the cost, however to be fair, I do find myself watching more sermons, speeches, and outreach missions than meaningless television shows. I use the majority of my television time to learn, and expand my understandings of The Bible and God’s world around me. This learning time is important to me; it has a lot of value to me in an informational sense, as well as a relaxation sense. There will always be trade offs between time and money throughout each persons lifetime; value however is subjective, and so this is a decision each person needs make for themselves.

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