You can always earn more money but you can never earn more time. Time is the ultimate nonrenewable resource.
Whether your goal is to grow your company into the next Facebook or spend every possible minute with your family, your skill at managing time will drive your success. And as you experience business growth, the demands on your schedule will likely grow exponentially.
It’s common for a small-business owner to feel crushed beneath the avalanche of new customers and the ever-increasing workload necessary for keeping the operation afloat. It becomes difficult — and sometimes impossible — for the entrepreneur to enjoy her success. That pressure endangers the survival of the business, as its value proposition suffers when the team struggles to serve the long line of customers.
That’s why “How can I manage my time better?” is a question I hear from small-business owners all the time. It’s a question that’s critical to the survival of your business and to your happiness. By clarifying your goals and developing a new approach to the way you manage time, you’ll use every minute to move forward on whichever priorities are most important to you.
But often when I start to delve into the details with entrepreneurs who are struggling with time, I discover that they’re actually asking a different question from how to better manage time: “Assuming I continue doing everything I’m doing right now, how can I accomplish more in each day?”
Don’t answer that question. That question is the prevailing wisdom, and the prevailing wisdom here is wrong. The right question is: “Should I continue doing everything I’m doing right now?”
Here’s the answer: Your schedule should contain only red-letter, top-priority activities. They include:
- Tasks that can only be completed by you
- Essential meetings and appointments
- Buffers for the unforeseen demands that arise each day
- Time for family
There are other ways — and other people — to get everything else done that needs to be done. Freeing yourself from the do-it-yourself trap is the only way to feel the satisfaction of productivity, and the lightness of leaving behind an unmanageable schedule. Plus, you’ll build momentum and confidence in your ability to tackle your goals.
It always comes down to this: Do less, better.
Want to dig deeper into some practical tips on how to do less, better? Grab a copy of The Golden Formula Whitepaper to unpack some of the most powerful concepts from our CEO’s international bestselling book, Live Free or DIY.