A Law Abiding Citizen - Part 1: Parkinson’s Law

The time has arrived once again. Another Eelah Founders Blog, Three Part Series. It’s too much excitement isn’t it, I know.

The subjects are based on 3 laws that I find of great interest. Each of them have powerful lessons that should be considered when thinking and talking about money. I am bringing this wisdom to your face for the next 3 weeks. What a time to be alive.

This week is about Parkinson’s Law. Weeks 2 and 3 have the following headlines:

Part 2: Murphy’s Law

Part 3: Manson's Law of Avoidance

Keep an eye out.

Part 1: Parkinson’s Law

Parkinson’s Law is the adage that "work expands so as to fill the time available for its completion".

In my simple mind, this really means that if someone says “Alfie you have 1 hour to complete this task” and I know it is a 15 minute task, then it is more likely to take me the full hour because I know I have the hour to do it.

Another common example I see is of how it applies to people's homes. The bigger your house - 4 bedrooms, 3 reception rooms, a detached double garage and a big shed - the more likely you are to fill that house and its various chambers with more and more stuff. Usually the stuff just comprises of things that you don’t need, want or value and then, before you know it, you’re appearing on Britain’s Biggest Hoarders on Channel 4.

However, the biggest example I see of Parkinson’s law is in relation to your Money. The more money you have… yeah, you guessed it, the more money you spend.

I distinctly remember thinking, when I was about 21, that all I needed to make all of my dreams come true, to pay off all my debts and be able to save loads of money to do what I wanted, was to just have another £1,000 a month.

Then 3 or 4 years later, with around about £2,000 a month more coming in, I distinctly remember thinking and even saying, “Okay, all I need now to make all of my dreams come true, to pay off all my debts and be able to save loads of money to do what I want, is to just have another £1,000 a month”.

Yeah, who was I fooling?

Parkinson law is dangerous when it comes to money. You can so easily be trying to keep up with the Jones’s or wanting to increase your lifestyle after a pay-rise, but the reality is, if you do not take measures to be really careful and have a proper plan for any additional money that comes your way, be that through salary increases, receiving inheritances or gifts, or taking more money out of your business, then you will never reach your point of financial independence.

You will forever want and need that additional £1,000 a month to make all your dreams come true, even though those dreams were actually possible many pay-rises ago.

Don’t be tricked into thinking that just because you have more money coming in, that you are now going to have more money and be rich and wealthy. The likelihood is that you will in fact just spend any extra income or cash you come across, unless you acknowledge Parkinson's law and consciously make an effort to put the money away.

I’ve seen plenty of people earning over £500,000 per annum, who do not have a pot to you know what in.

Don’t be that person.

Hashtag Wisdom


Alfie Mullan, June 2019

Want to hold a conversation that will quite literally change your life? Well drop me an email and we can get this new life on the road.