First of all, this is not just another time management article. As we all know, the moment you try to manage anything, it seems to slip away easier than if you had left it alone. Therefore, when it comes to looking at fitting more into your day, you need to take a different approach.
I believe that time passes us by as entrepreneurs due to the pervasive myth .. “I need to work hard for my money”. As if the only way we deserve the prosperity is via our blood, sweat and tears. Furthermore, this myth continues to be propagated and passed from business owner to business owner until it is just a “Myth” in “Truths” clothing.
How do I know this is just a myth? Because I spend 3-4 days a week working no more than 8 hours a day and manage to bring in six figures. I also have many other friends and clients who are also living in this truth, where they are super-productive, but don’t ever worry about burning themselves out. You may be asking, “How do I change this perception for myself?” There are many components to pealing this myth back, but one key tool is distinguishing between the concepts of efficiency versus effectiveness.
In The 4 Hour Work Week, Tim Ferriss states that:
- Effectiveness is that which you do that gets you closer to the goals you want to achieve.
- Efficiency is how quickly you can get things done, whether it is important or not.
The distinction being that we will fill up space and time that will keep us busy all day because that is what we believe we need to be doing. In fact, when I left the corporate world and started my own business, I used to spend hours filling up the work day. I didn’t have clearly defined goals and had a lot of empty space left behind from not having to commute. With this added time and no goal, other than launching a business, and an extreme guilt that I wasn’t working hard enough, I spent a lot of time at the computer, researching, learning, and emailing everyone and no one in particular at the same time.
Once I worked with a coach, set goals and then assessed how I spent my time against these goals, I was able to cut out a full day of “working” and I ended up bringing more money into the business. All because I was tracking what I did in a day against my goals! To this day my coach keeps me on track. Making sure that each goal I have tracks directly back to the financial goals of my business. This sometimes is uncomfortable, but it’s the only way to move a business forward.
Your Challenge – Should You Choose to Accept it is:
Look at your business goals and make sure they are tied to financial goals. Assess how you’re spending your time against the concept of efficiency versus effectiveness. Take a hard look at things that are “efficient” and find ways to stop, automate or delegate them.
Silvia Johnson is a Business Leverage Coach, specializing in helping entrepreneurs create a 6-Figure Business working 3-4 days a week. For free resources and to sign up for her Outside The Cubicle Newsletter visit her website at: http://www.SixFiguresOutsideTheCubicle.com
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