July 02, 2020
In 1994, Hootie and the Blowfish exploded on the music scene with an album title Cracked Rear View. One of the tracks off this album was titled, “Time.”
The song opens with some strong lyrics from Darius Rucker.
“Time why you punish me … like a wave bashing into the shore … you wash away my dreams … time you walk away … like a friend with somewhere to go … you left me crying.”
Time is not your friend or your enemy. It doesn’t care what is going on in the world. It just keeps moving, whether we like it or not. The good news is time isn’t in charge of our schedule.
What do you think about when you hear the word time? Do you think about how much of it you have daily, or do you cringe and think about how little of it you have? Is your glass half full or half empty?
Rucker sings, “Can you teach me ‘bout tomorrow … and all the pain and sorrow running free. ‘Cause tomorrow’s just another day … and I don’t believe in time. Time I don’t understand.”
Time doesn’t care that we don’t have a way to hit stop or pause. It just keeps trucking along. Minute after minute, day after day and year after year.
When it comes to time, we are playing on a level field.
“When it comes to time, we are playing on a level field.”
We all have the exact same amount of time each day. It’s pretty simple. You get 24 hours daily. 1,440 minutes each day. If you are not getting projects or tasks done each day, do you know why? The problem is most people don’t have a plan and a solid schedule. They leave huge, chunks of time open when they should have every hour mapped out.
Rucker sings, “time is wasting … time is walking … you ain’t no friend of mine … I don’t know where I’m goin’ I think I’m out of my mind … thinking about time.”
Don’t go out of your mind thinking about time. Get focused and intentional about time.
People spend time doing nothing. Then, they tell you how busy they are. How they can’t get anything done. What they don’t tell you is that they had time to spend four hours on social media, four hours watching TV and slept a solid eight hours the previous day.
Most people work a job at least eight hours a day. That knocks out 40 hours in a week out of a potential 168 hours. The American Academy of Sleep Medicine and the Sleep Research Society released a study in 2016 that suggested adults age 18-60 need at least seven hours of sleep nightly. OK, there goes another 49 hours of your week. You are down to 79 hours outside of normal work and sleep. Let’s say you spend another 18 hours a week eating meals. That drops you to 61 hours left in any given week. I’d guess you spend at least 45 minutes getting ready each day. There goes another 5.25 hours. Down to less than 56 hours.
So, here is the question: what do people do with the other 55 hours? When you can answer that then you get to the root of why they aren’t more successful. I’m fine with people that have hobbies and interests, but when they complain about where they are professionally then I have to be careful not to laugh. What you do from the time you get home each evening until midnight is probably a good indication of where the problem lies.
Rucker throws another deep-thinking lyric at us when he sings, “time the past has come and gone … the future’s far away … and now only lasts for one second, one second.”
We can’t get back the past, we live in the present and we are not promised the future. It only takes one second for everything to change. If we know that, then why would waste time?
Successful people don’t stop working at 5 p.m. They don’t run from work and head to the local watering hole like their hair is on fire. They have other things they want to finish that day. They spend time with family, but they are masters at sneaking in a couple more calls, emails and texts. They brainstorm one more project before they call it a day.
Successful people also know how to seemingly grow time. How do they do it? It’s not magic. There’s no secret to it. They are just more intentional then other people. They are not satisfied with where they are at, and they take action to change that.
If time is your most valuable asset, then why do people seem to waste it so frivolously? It’s crazy to do that. You can change where you are and move to where you want to be just by making small, but intentional tweaks to your daily routine.
The more ways you can find to multiply your time and efforts, the more successful you will be. Maybe that means hiring staff. Yes, this is an added expense, but what if it multiplies your income by 5x or 10x? That’s a pretty good return on you investment I think.
CAUTION: If you hire staff, be clear about what you want them to do. They should know exactly what is expected from them each day. What they do should free you up to do what you should be doing. If that’s not the case, then you have messed up. The reason to have staff is so you are not wasting time on things you shouldn’t be fooling with.
You can call this delegating or whatever, but it’s about NOT doing basic stuff that you can teach anybody to do for you. Don’t waste your time on administrative stuff when you can easily hire somebody to do that for you. The trick is to get the biggest ROI possible for your money. When expectations are clear and are being met, you can even raise the bar for your staff. Keep them in the circle they should be in and don’t let them stray. Keep them focused on what you need them working on.
NOTE: I have never lost an employee due to a lack of work that needed to be done. I have lost many because they were bored. Your staff should never be caught up! When you have high expectations, activity and productivity happens at a much higher level. Basically, more work gets done.
People operate in one of two worlds for the most part. They are either micro or macro thinkers. They apply it to the situation they are presented. Either way, it doesn’t matter.
Macro thinking: What do I want? This is about feelings. You feel it so you do it.
Micro thinking: How do I get it? These people are doers. They know what to do and they act. These people need to know the “how to,” where others want the macro then they can digest the micro.
When a person offers an excuse with micro logic, get them thinking on the macro level. If they want to go macro, move them to micro logic. Either way, flip it and get them to the opposite side of things.
Great leaders are able to take a person from macro to micro quickly and easily, and vice versa.
When people tell you that they don’t have to enough to do a task, ask them how much activity they had in that area last week. When a person tells you they hate doing something, change the narrative by asking them how awesome the reward is going to be that comes their way if they do what it is that they say they hate doing. Good questions can move a frustrated or person that believes in their mind that they are stuck and can’t – or don’t want – to do something.
When a person complains about making dials or visiting with clients, you might respond with something like, “Man, isn’t it going to be fun to go to Thailand?”
That’ll mess them up.
NOTE: Until you get comfortable asking the right questions, you are only thinking about the macro. You think you are right because you think you know the micro. A great way to ask questions is by starting with the following: How come …? How come I haven’t found anybody better? How can I get somebody to move faster? This is not rocket science!
Ask yourself this daily: How come I don’t seem to get enough done in my 24 hours? How come in 168 last week, I didn’t get much done? How do I need to spend my minutes and hours going forward?
Another lyric from “Time” says, “time without courage … and time without fear … is just wasted, wasted, wasted time … time why you punish me?”
Don’t let time punish you. Take control of it. You have the power to dictate what you do every second.
Get fanatical about your minutes and hours. When you change how you spend this time, you will change the results you are getting too!!!