Recently, I was in a meeting and the subject of work came up. I mentioned that I work about 10 hours a week on my primary business.
One of the guys recoiled and said, “What?! Did you win the lottery or something?”
I replied, “No, I’ve just got a really good team and a great system in place.”
In my primary business, I do have a few key clients that I work with personally but for the most part, my team does all of the day-to-day work. Like I said in the meeting, I owe my work schedule to the systems I put in place and the team I’ve got.
This didn’t happen overnight. It took literally years to get right. I could still do even better actually and I spend a good amount of time with my coaching clients. But, I’m incredibly grateful for where I’m at.
There’s More Than One Currency?
Tim Ferriss, the Godfather of lifestyle design, talks about the various kinds of currencies there are. He says that we often think of currency in terms of money when in fact, there are more currencies available to us each paying in different ways. Other currencies include: time, mobility, fame & notoriety, etc.
I can think of two very good friends who are also business owners that have worked in their businesses for just about as long as I’ve worked in mine. And I freely admit, they make more money than I do.
However, when it comes to the currency of time, I blow them out of the water. Both of these guys put in a solid 40+ hours a week. They love what they do and that’s great but they’re not as “rich” in time as I am.
And I’ll just add that I also blow them out of the water when it comes to mobility. Both of these guys are tied to locally-based businesses. My business comes with me wherever I go (so long as there’s an internet connection). But we’ll save mobility for another discussion…
Time Currency is Freedom
It’s hard to put into words without coming across as incredibly arrogant how cool being in control of my time really is. For most people, the two weeks of PTO (paid time off) a year and the nights and weekends is all they get.
So when I say that I work 10 hours a week and come and go as I please, there’s just no easy way to say it to people with a “normal” schedule. But I don’t apologize for it. I worked super hard to make this happen.
Also, I’m not saying I’m super rich. I’m not. But we’ve got all we need to do what we want to do when we want to do it. I won’t be buying a house in Malibu anytime soon but that doesn’t matter to me at this point in my life.
Here’s what does matter to me – if I want to go trail running with my wife while the kids are at school, I can. If I want to take off on a last minute cruise, I can. If we want to buy tickets and fly to see friends in Barcelona or Playa del Carmen or wherever, we can.
I don’t need to call in sick. I don’t need to use my paid time off. I don’t need to ask a boss to spend time with my family. I don’t have to get people to cover my shift.
I just freaken go!
I know. I know. If you’re reading this while at your cubicle, I sound like a conceited snob. Like I said, to the person with a normal schedule, there’s no easy way to say it in a nice, happy way.
Is Time More Important than Money?
Here’s the thing, most people are at jobs because they need money. OK, cool. Money is good. It buys food, shelter, and airplane tickets to see the world. But money doesn’t always mean freedom.
It’s certainly not any good to you to make a ton of money but not have any time to spend it with your family!
And here’s the big fat kicker that we time-freedom people understand – money doesn’t have to be tied to time!
My ability to make more money is largely separated from time. I don’t trade hours for dollars. I get paid regardless of my hourly schedule.
That’s kind of the whole point of creating a lifestyle business. It’s a way to make money to pay for what you want to do – in other words, how you want to spend your time.
Time is the one thing that makes us all equal. We all get the same 24 hours every day. What we choose to do with that time is entirely up to each and every one of us.
What will you do with your time? Will you slave away at a job you don’t like only to spend nights and weekends with your loved ones? Or, will you work hard on growing a real business that buys your freedom?
I can tell you for myself, I will never have another job ever again in my life. I just value my time WAY too much to ever go back to clocking in.
In fact, I had a dream not too long ago where I was at a job and I literally woke up in a sweat. I checked my surroundings, realized the day ahead of me was entirely mine, and I thanked God for my freedom, and went back to sleep. No joke.
So the choice is yours. You have just as much time as anyone else. What will you do with it? What changes will you make to keep more of your time?