Life Coin Framework

After graduating from college, my father gave me some advice on how I could better think through my life goals. Life Coins.

In a nutshell

You can divide your life into 5 year blocks - each block being a Life Coin. Your time is currency and you choose to spend, trade, or invest it.

Unlike currency, you're always using it, you cannot passively accrue it, and you do not know when it will run out.

Your time is therefore valuable and limited. It’s all about knowing what to do with it and finding satisfaction in every minute used.

Spending Life Coins

You spend when you are enjoying yourself or idle. A well spent coin is time put into what you love without expecting anything in return other than joy. For example, time spent learning something new, regardless of whether you enjoy it or not, is not spend if you primarily expect it to yield in the future. This is why it is important to understand yourself and what brings you joy.

I have found the easiest way to understanding what brings you joy is exploring. There are 2 ways to do it: by reading and by experiencing. Being open to reading before experiencing anything that piques your interest is a great way to try it all for a bargain before making any commitments. Remember, you are always changing and your interests are doing the same.

Investing Life Coins

You invest when you expect something variable in return. Most of us inadvertently invest the first 4 or 5 life coins in education which yields better odds for a fulfilling career. A coin dedicated to your spouse or family is also an investment where the yield can be love, belonging, esteem, and/or some version of self fulfillment.

I have found the best investments come from what you love. You can easily find what you love if you pay attention to your curiosity in uncomfortable situations. This occurs before exploration, it's that instinct that serves to push you in your direction. This is why I jump into things head first without necessarily having any expertise in the subject. These uncomfortable situations let you have a short experiences across many fields and industries. Of course, you have to make sure you have a way out of the situation in case you absolutely hate where it's taking you. I found software development by following this instinct. Although I’m not formally trained in Computer Science, I found my mind gravitating back to software development after first trying it. "How can I solve it?" I obsessed over the challenge of finding a solution to whatever I ran into. By putting myself in an uncomfortable situation where I was forced to develop a full software solution to run my first business, I was able to realize how much I wanted to commit to mastering the field.

Trading Life Coins

Most of us do this with the rest of our coins after the 5th. You're trading life coins when you expect something fixed in return. Most of the time you're trading life coins for money but consider that time can be traded for other things as well like power, status, or affection. It's crucial to trade your life coins for what you believe your time is worth (at the very least) and for what you can identify your time is worth in the open market.

Nowadays it's fairly easy to figure out whether you're trading your time fairly thanks to the internet with tools like,, and Be mindful though, it's not all about the gross exchange that you receive for trading your time. Like any trade, you're interacting with people who may be investing in you long term and not just trading for a fixed one-time result. Being able to differentiate the intentions of the other party is crucial to figure out whether the transaction is worth it for you.

In the end

The point is to enjoy your time as best you can. Make the most of it by doing the things that bring you joy and the things that you love. Stay curious and put yourself in uncomfortable situations that may lead you to explore worlds of all kinds. Don't be afraid to pivot, in the end you'll always have the most important piece of the puzzle - yourself.