– What is the key difference between successful people and unsuccessful people?
Think about it, we all have 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and 365 days a year. It’s very, very fair. It is an equal playing field. So at the end of the day, what determines how successful we become in how we use our time. So, this is how successful people manage their time.
Today, I’m going to give you three simple strategies that will help you to manage your time better. Strategy number one, time block for social media and emails. Understand this, when you get up in the morning, if the first thing that you do is to go and reach for your cell phone, and you’re checking your messages, you’re checking your email, you’re checking your PM, you’re checking social media, that first hour every morning, that’s your most critical hour. How you do in the morning dictates how well you do for the rest of the day. If right there you’re checking all these messages, and I know, I know what it is like, right?
In the morning, you wanna go reach out for that cell phone, right? You want to see, oh, did I miss any messages from last night? What happened? What is going on? What’s my friend up to? That first hour of every day, it’s very, very precious. You should think about how you can invest wisely. For some, maybe you wanna do something like reading in the morning, for some, maybe you wanna do a little bit of exercise, you wanna work out, you wanna do a little bit yoga, a little bit of stretching. For some, you want to have a very nice breakfast with your family, it is connection time.
For some, maybe it’s time for you to set the goals and say, okay, what are some of the things that you want to accomplish that particular day? What you don’t want is to jump into email mode. I always say your inbox is other people’s agenda. Every single time you check your inbox, there’s all these things that just demands your attention. That pulls you away, that distracts you. You don’t wanna check your emails 10 times a day, and you don’t wanna check your social media 10, 20 times a day either. It’s very easy to screen suck all day and you’re just checking messages, checking messages repetitively, right? And you check it every 10, 20 minutes.
Do you really need to do that? The metaphor I use all the time is, do you go check your mailbox 10, 20 times a day? Then why would you go check your inbox 10, 20 times a day? One of the things that I do is block out the time for social media and I block out time for email. That’s it. I have a stop time, I have an end time. I don’t go check social media 10, 20 times a day because I’ve got other things to do, I’ve got more important things I have to accomplish. So, block it.
Block out time and say, “Okay, I’m gonna do it in the morning, “once in the morning.” If you want to, I’m gonna do it once an evening and that is it. In between, you work on important things. You work on projects, you work on your business, you work on your career, whatever that you are working on. That’s how you stay focused. You see, time management is actually a myth. Because you cannot actually manage time. You and I, we only have 24 hours a day.
You cannot make them go faster, you cannot make them go slower, we cannot create more time. All we could do is actually manage our priorities. So when someone tells me, “Oh, I don’t have time,” what they’re actually saying is, “This is not that important for me. “It’s not my priority.” That’s what they’re actually saying, “Well, I don’t have time to exercise.” What they actually mean is exercise is not that important to me. That’s the truth. So, time management is actually priority management. And at the end of the day, priority management is actually self-management, how you manage yourself and how you manage your energy.
What do you invest your energy in? Into something, something that will contribute to your happiness, to your health, to your well being, to your success, that’s the key. Strategy number two, know your magic number. If you don’t know what your magic number is, I talk about this extensively in my book, “F.U. Money.” If you don’t have a copy of my book, “F.U. Money” yet, click the link in the description, you could get a free copy. All you need to do is cover the shipping. In the book, I talk about your magic number. Let’s say your goal, your financial goal is to make $100,000 a year, six-figure income. Wouldn’t you agree? That’s pretty good for most people, $100,000 a year. And let’s say on average, you work 40 hours a week, and we have 52 weeks a year, let’s say you take two weeks off, 50 weeks a year. So, 50 weeks times 40 hours, that’s 2,000 hours.
So take your annual income goal, $100,000, let’s divide by 2,000 hours. What do you get? You get $50 per hour. So what it means is this, if your goal is to make $100,000 a year, it means that your hourly rate needs to be at least, at the very minimum, $50 an hour. Now, here’s the key. Look at everything that you do every single day and ask yourself this question, comment below, “Is what I’m doing worth $50 an hour.” Now, if what you’re doing now is not worth $50 an hour, that means for every single hour that you’re working, you need to be at least making $50 an hour. That’s the very bare minimum of the value that you need to create for every hour that you put in. If what you’re doing is not worth $50 an hour, then how the hell in the world ever, are you gonna get to $100,000 a year? It’s cause and effect. Does that make sense? And now let’s say your goal is to make a million dollars a year, a million dollars a year. What does that mean? It means at the very minimum, every single hour that you work, your hourly rate needs to be, at the very minimum, $500 an hour.
The number is actually higher than that, because if you and I are honest, you know we’re not productive all the time. All the time, not every single hour are we gonna hit 500 bucks per hour in terms of bringing value to the marketplace. To make a million dollars a year, 500 bucks per hour of value. So think about that. This leads to strategy number three, and that is to avoid minimum wage activities. Let’s say the phone company overcharge you for $5 and you pick up the phone and you call them and you argue with them and you spend an hour on the phone arguing about that five bucks. And at the end, fine, they adjust it and you save back five bucks.
Now, did you just save $5? Not really, not if your goal is to make a million dollars a year. Because that phone call didn’t save you five bucks, that phone call just cost you $495. So I want you to imagine this is a bonfire and you just spent, just waste 495 bucks that you burn yourself. You need to look at it that way, every single minute that you have, it is an investment. If you’re investing that time to spend with your family, that’s fine, you’re getting happiness, you’re getting fulfillment back. That’s a return. It’s incalculable, that’s fine. But if you’re talking about business activity, there has to be a return. You’re spending this much time, you want this much return back. Money at the end of the day is incredibly simple, money is math. You invest x, you get y back. That’s an investor mentality. The problem is when it comes to time, most people have the wasters mentality. They waste time. Or spenders, they just spend time.
There’s a Chinese proverb that I like. “An inch of time is worth an inch of gold. But you cannot buy the inch of time with an inch of gold.” So choose wisely how you want to invest your time because, at the end of the day, your life is nothing more than a reflection of how well you invest your time.