20 minutes = 5 days

It’s a truth we all know, but occasionally bears repeating:

You can never buy back spent time.

Once spent, time is gone, never to be used again.

“20 minutes = 5 days” is a reminder that the time we spend adds up.

Let me explain.

Eight years ago, a mentor told me, “Mike, you’re 30 years old. That’s three decades of living. If you want to do something great, do it now. Don’t wait. Those three decades have gone fast, and you’ve got, at best, four or five more before you aren’t able to do what you want to do anymore.”

His comment struck me as dismal.

Over time, I recognized its truth.


Now it’s my motivation to do big things, help others, and make a difference in this short but meaningful life.

I’m 38 years today, just shy of four decades on Earth. There’s no telling how many more I have left, but what is certain is that my time is finite.

So is yours.

Spend 20 minutes on Instagram today, 20 more on Facebook tomorrow, another 20 on Twitter the next. Added up, that’s only an hour. But 20 minutes every day for a year adds up to five full days.

Five, full, 24-hour days gone, never to return.

For context:

  • Five 24-hour days amounts to 15 eight-hour working days in the next year.

  • Fifteen eight-hour working days adds up to 600 working days over the next four decades.

600 working days!

Imagine what could you do with five extra days this year. Imagine what you could do with 600 extra uninterrupted days in the years ahead.

Some people have built hugely successful companies, gotten bored vagabonding, and gone through college in less time!


Look, I’m not trying to pick on social media. Hell, I’m Instagramming right now :-). Everyone needs a break. Instagram, Facebook, and other social media can be a great way to kick back and let your mind relax.

What I am saying is this.

Be conscious of where you spend your time, and try hard to invest it instead.

Time spent is gone forever. Time invested in friends, family, and hard work will pay dividends and is bound to make a difference in the decades ahead.

About the Author


Michael Mehlberg


I help high-achieving entrepreneurs organize their brain and schedule so they can organize their life and business.

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