When Driving Is A Total Waste of Time

driving frustrations

Ever since I could remember my name, I have always despised driving. I find it boring, annoying and even time consuming especially when you live in an over crowded city like Lagos. I never had the interest and only learnt how to drive because I believe driving is one of the fundamental survival skills (Read: Two Things That could Save Your Life ), girls dig guys that drive cars and of course, not to be left behind.
Why would I drive when I could delegate someone called a driver to do that for me? Why waste long hours in Lagos traffic when I could utilize those precious unrecoverable minutes to do something more productive?
The quest for a driver had been left on the back burner because not only can I not afford a driver now, I don’t consider it necessary at this stage of my career.

Then came the article that awoke my quest for a driver written by Okechukwu Ofili titled “What is the value of 1 hour of your time?”. Below are paraphrased excepts from the article

“…this friend lives on the mainland and works on the Island so everyday he has to pull himself out of bed at 4:30 am shower, dress up and then get in his car at about 5:30 am only to sit in traffic for another 2 hours before he gets to his work at about 7:30 am. The irony is the fact that he is very well paid and paying a driver at about N30,000 to N50,000 per month would not even bother his account balance in the slightest term. With a driver all my friend needs to do is jump into an already washed AC pumping car and get chauffeured to and from work. He could choose to sleep during this time, make work calls, watch movies on his tab, complete office work, play snake and ladder, read a newspaper, research on the internet, sleep some more ….he can do whatever he wants. His stress level will reduce because he no longer has to worry about blaring his horn at slow moving cars, his driver can do that work for him.

But here’s what my friend said when I offered my suggestion. And his response is key because this is the mentality a lot of people have. I call it the scarcity mentality. My friend said and I quote
“I can’t afford to pay a driver 30,000 Naira to drop me off at work and bring me back, what will he be doing in between?” Let’s forget the fact that “in between” your driver, can help you pick up food, run errands, get your kids, buy diesel for generator, queue up for you in fuel scarcity, cash a check for you, deliver and pick up your dry cleaned clothes etc”. Why do we continually decide to stress ourselves?

Okay, let’s assume you spend 4 hours a day….5 working days a week (I have not even included weekends). That is 20 hours a week stuck in traffic (remember a day constituents 24 hours). In a month, you are spending about 80 hours (a little over 3 days worth of time) in traffic. Imagine what you could achieve by paying a very experienced driver N40,000 a month. That amounts to N500 for an hour of your life back (N40,000 divided by 80 hours).
Is your time not worth more than N500/hour?

Like my father would say when asked why he doesn’t have a driver “what if the driver runs away with my car”. Seriously dad (and his think-mates)?. What happened to background checks? What happened to finding out where the driver resides? Where his family stays, where he comes from if push comes to shove?

Let’s quit seeing money from a simplistic point of view. Remember money can be spent and recovered but time once gone CAN NEVER be recovered.

If your driving skills doesn’t fetch you money like those Formula One drivers, please delegate driving to someone whose job it is to drive and use yours more effectively to close business deals, finish up past due tasks, rest and basically be less stressed.


Adapted from “What is the value of 1 hour of your time? by Okechukwu Ofili via: http://ofilispeaks.com/what-is-the-value-of-1-hour-of-your-time

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