You have three choices for how you spend your time. You can invest it, spend it, or waste it. Which boat do you find yourself in? Do you waste your time doing mindless things, or are you genuinely trying to invest and spend your time wisely?

These are important questions to ask, but don’t judge yourself if you think you are wasting more time than you want. When you judge yourself, it creates guilt, and guilt blocks growth.

“When you experience that guilt, you judge yourself and that experience escalates,” said Jay Shetty. “You start creating blocks for growth. When you feel guilty, you feel tired, exhausted, and lethargic. You feel lazy and bad about yourself. That strips you of energy and overwhelms you instead of empowering you.”

In this article, Jay Shetty reveals six ways successful people spend their time and how you can learn to stop wasting time and instead spend it investing in things that will empower your life.

Create a Usefulness Mindset

Do you rush to buy the newest model phone that hits the market? If so, you are not alone. Just because a phone is a few years old doesn’t mean it’s obsolete and useless. So often, we disregard and discard things as useless when they still have a lot of life in them. 

Sometimes we also do this with the decisions we make. Maybe you feel this way about some of the decisions you make when things don’t turn out how you’d hoped. It’s tempting to think something is useless when it’s not what you think you should be doing or what you want to do. But what if you were able to learn from it? 

Many times, the greater your success, the more closed, selective and controlling you become. It should actually be the opposite, says Jay Shetty. Instead, Shetty’s mentor,  and now friend Thomas Power, taught him to be open, random and supportive. 

“You think [randomness] is making you better, but actually, it’s making you worse because you’re now losing the ability to make something useful and learn from it,” Jay Shetty explains. “I find randomness useful, so I make space for it.”

Successful people ask themselves if what they are doing will help them achieve their goals. Will an experience or task help get them where they want to be? It can be anything from taking a nap, a break, or getting a massage. Whatever it is, they look at it in terms of usefulness instead of uselessness.  

Stay open to the possibility each moment holds. Find the aspects of the situation that will be useful to you, and focus on applying that to your journey.

Study vs. Envy

Jealousy, envy and comparison lead to self-worth issues. Unfortunately, we have probably all found ourselves feeling those things at some point in life. Successful people, however, don’t let jealousy or envy sneak in. 

Instead, when they see people achieving great things, they use that to motivate themselves. They take the negative feelings and turn them into positive ones by studying the other person. 

“They study their lives and their journey,” Jay Shetty shares. “They study that first video. The problem is we’re looking at people at the stage they’re at right now. We’re not looking at the phase they started at. Study the journey that got them to where they are now. Envying that journey creates more negativity, baggage and trauma in your life.”

The deeper you dive into someone’s journey, the better you understand the steps and process it takes to achieve those goals. That knowledge empowers you to put the plan into motion for yourself.

Education vs. Entertainment

“I recommend that if you’re not using social media as a creator or a consumer of positive information, unfollow, block and move on,” suggests Jay Shetty. “Seventy-seven percent of those struggling financially spend more than an hour on both of these things daily, not for growth, not for education, but for entertainment.”

Substitute the things wasting your time for things that are a good use of your time. Start with baby steps, and don’t rely on willpower. It will stress you out when you try and force yourself to make a change all at once. 

Build a healthy habit. Jay Shetty says you can start by making a change for one day, then add another until you have established the routine. As you practice it, your mindset shifts, and you break that pattern one day. Your new habit becomes the thing you look forward to doing.

Intelligence vs. Emotions

“An emotional response is a signal,” explains Jay Shetty. “It’s almost like receiving an email that says, ‘I don’t like this, I don’t like what that person said, I don’t like what that person’s doing’ and then all of a sudden, your emotions are not being filtered.”

So what does it mean to filter your emotions? Jay Shetty likens it to entering a home with high security. 

“You have to walk through multiple gates,” Jay Shetty explains. “The first gate you get buzzed in through, then you meet someone who’s going to check whether you’re allowed to get in. Maybe they’re going to check your ID. Perhaps they’re going to check your name. They’re going to make a phone call, then you get to the final gate.”

The same concept applies to filtering your emotions. 

Filter #1. The first filter is asking yourself if the feeling you’re having is true. Most of the time, it’s not. Emotions are based on what someone has said or assumed, so you need to seek accurate information. 

Filter #2. The second filter is asking yourself if the information is useful. Is it making you a better person, or getting you closer to your goal? Chances are, it’s doing the opposite. 

Filter #3. The third filter is asking yourself if the emotion is actionable? What is the action that will solve the emotion you feel? 

Putting your emotions through these filters gives you time to get to the truth of the matter. Your emotions will stay in check in the process of finding the truth.

“The truth is useful,” shares Jay Shetty. “It is useful based on how it’s making you behave and if it is actionable. The action is the most important part. Successful people only work based on the truth, and they filter their emotions into actions that can change their emotions. Actions that change your emotions are what should follow an emotional response.” 

Growth over Goals

Everyone should set goals. Setting goals is good because it gives you a standard by which to measure, especially when you feel you’re falling short. 

Successful people create growth plans for their goals. They know their direction, and they know how they will get there. What you need is a plan on how you will reach that goal. 

“Successful people don’t just point to the map; they come up with the journey to follow on the map,” Jay Shetty explains.

Next time you set a goal, set a growth plan as well. Include in the plan everything from the skills you need to develop, the coaching you need, what you want to learn from the process, and what pivots in your strategy you need to take to get there.

Therapy and Coaching

We live in a world where therapy and coaching are booming. Therapy helps people make sense of their past, and coaching helps people work towards their future. Together, it is an incredible combination.

Working with a professional can help you make huge strides in life. Therapy and coaching are wonderful outlets for you. They are needed more now than ever. 

Most people are not wasting time on purpose. Time just drifts away, and we often don’t control our time wisely. There never seems to be enough time to get everything we want done. By modeling what successful people do with their time, we can better understand what changes we need to make.

Another great way to spend your time is meditation. Ready to make meditation a new daily habit? I can help! Meditate with me daily for seven minutes in The Daily Jay, Jay Shetty’s new mindfulness series on Calm. Save 40% off your subscription when you join now at

More From Jay Shetty

Listen to the entire On Purpose with Jay Shetty podcast episode on “6 Ways Successful People Spend Their Time” now in the iTunes store or on Spotify. For more inspirational stories and messages like this, check out Jay’s website at

By using this site, you agree to our privacy policy.