A Short Theory on Time

The one great equalizer is that we all have 24 hours in a day. It's how we spend those 24 hours that makes the differences in our lives. Some people stay home and read all day. Some people put in 16 hours in the office. Some people hang out on the beach. Some people travel continuously. These are neither good nor bad, inherently. They simply change how our lives play out.

This beautiful, equal allotment of time can be broken down into three categories: your full-time job, your side hustle, and your hobby (or hobbies). The activities that fall into these categories can shift—for example, your hobby can become your side hustle if you monetize it, or your side hustle can become your full-time job when it starts generating enough revenue—but the three categories largely remain the same.

Full-Time Job

This can also be called your No. 1 Priority or your vocation (as in "an occupation for which one is specifically trained or educated," not "strong feeling for a particular line of work," "calling," or "life's purpose"). For stay-at-home parents, their Full-Time Job is to take care of their children and (usually) the house. For most workers, this is their office job. Their main source of income. How they spend the majority of their waking hours.

Side Hustle

The term "Side Hustle" is a little misleading. This is better identified as your No. 2 Priority, or possibly your avocation (as in "source of minor income," not "hobby"). For office workers with families, this is most likely the time you spend with your spouse and children in the evening: making and eating dinner, the nighttime clean-up, getting your children ready for bed, light chores. It might be a second and/or part-time job, a small entrepreneurial endeavor, or something creative that carries more weight than a hobby.


Hobbies are those things you do that add a little spice to your life. Dance classes, homebrewing, voice lessons, tap dancing, rock climbing, long-distance running. They're the activities on which you spend money with no expectation of return; you simply do them because you love them and they light you up. A hobby is something that makes your life worth living.


All of these categories are important. They may not carry equal weight or warrant equal attention, but each category has a specific place and purpose in your life. Your Full-Time Job supports you and your family. Your Side Hustle allows you to use a different set of skills. Your Hobbies keep you awake in your life and make you a more interesting, well-rounded person.

Feed My Curiosity, Please

How does your time break down? What's your Full-Time Job, your Side Hustle, and your Hobbies?

Leave your answer in the comment box below.