With so many distractions, choices and opportunities around us it is often difficult to decide on the best use of our time.
It is said that if you ask someone stuck in a dead end job how much they earn they will quote their annual salary and conversely if you ask a successful entrepreneur they will quote an hourly rate. Here’s why:
They Know that Time is Precious
No matter your profession, net worth, assets or income; we all have one thing in common. We are all given the same 24 hours in a day, the same 7 days in a week and 52 weeks in a year. It’s what we do with that time that matters. By thinking about your income in terms of hourly rate you can ask yourself the question:
“Was that hour of my time worth £XY to my employer/business?”
Ask yourself that question a few times each day or if you’re feeling brave every working hour! Keep a time diary of one or two of your working days to find out more about your habits. When you are that aware of where your time is going you will become much more productive than the worker who thinks:
“Was that entire year of my life worth £WXYZ to my employer/business?”
How can you do your work more efficiently and to a higher standard? Can you work in batches or create a new process? You tell me…
Long Term Goals
Another important principle in optimising your time is having a clear set of long term goals. The 80/20 principle illustrates that just 20% of your time spent working could equate to 100% of your success. Being clear on your long term goals will ensure that you spend your time on the important tasks and not waste time working on something that might not even need to be done! The average office worker wastes over 2 hours in a day and completes over 20 tasks whilst they are only being measured on around 3 (Brian Tracy).
What are your long term goals and what do you need to do to achieve them? Write it down!
Time is what we want most, but what we use worst.
Evaluating My Time – A Case Study
I have recently received a wonderful opportunity whereby I can work from home and get paid overtime hours (paid at time and a third). This presents a very useful dilemma whereby I can look back on my time and think:
“I could have earnt an extra £XY from overtime with that wasted hour”
It is also useful tool to use against my side hustle ideas whilst; it is now very clear that I should only spend time on my side hustles if either:
- I will be making more than my hourly overtime rate
- I am confident that this time spent will provide a greater return in the future
Waste your money and you’re only out of money, but waste your time and you’ve lost a part of your life. Michael LeBoeuf
Are you a diligent timekeeper or a competent procrastinator? If you don’t know it already, calculate your hourly rate.