Have you ever heard the saying, “If you want something done, give it to a busy person?” Do you think it’s true? We all wear many hats, and it’s hard to get everything done.
I’m a husband, dad, financial advisor, podcaster, writer, short-order cook, dishwasher, housecleaner, and landscaper (to name a few). I do some professionally, others as an amateur. Like you, I’ve got a lot going on.
Because we all have finite resources, we need to be good stewards of them. We need to prioritize how we spend our time, attention, and money. If we’re not being mindful of how we’re allocating them, there’s a long line of marketers who are interested in making those decisions for us.
It’s important to me to find the right balance. One day it will be 50% work, and 50% family. The day after that, it might be 20% work, 60% family, and 20% hobbies. The point being, my “balance” will rarely be the same two days in a row, and that’s ok. My goal is to position myself for success and to do everything I can to allow my daily plans to survive their collision with reality.
We all know we have very little control of what life throws at us. The more intentional we are, the higher our chances of success.
My goal is to give you some practical tools you can implement in service of helping you live a happy and contented life.
I’ve spent 20 years helping people become financially successful in my role as a financial advisor. I’m honored to be named to Investopedia’s list of the top 100 financial advisors many years running. And I’m also passionate about healthy living, host a daily podcast called LifeBlood, and I’m a devoted member of my community. I’m a person who gets lots of things done.
But that doesn’t mean I want you to pile a bunch of extra stuff onto your plate. Rather, I want to help you more fully live the life you desire.
Here’s what we’ll cover:
- So many masters
- Being a good steward of of our resources
- Positioning yourself for success
Let’s get started.
So many masters
In the Bible, Matthew 6:24 tells us, “No one can serve two masters.”
It’s easy to spread ourselves too thin, and to over-commit ourselves. There are so many things I do today that didn’t exist 20 years ago, and I imagine that will be true 20 years from today. In order to protect our wellbeing, we need to increase our awareness of the things competing for our time, attention, and money.
Here’s my quick list:
- Social media
- The metaverse (web 3)
- Online betting
- Online trading
- Fantasy sports
- Subscription services (streaming)
Everyone of these is consuming our time and attention. Many are also consuming our money.
I encourage you to make your own list of things you’re spending your time, attention, and money on that you didn’t use to.
Being a good steward of our resources
We’re all aware of social media algorithms, and we’re becoming more aware of the value of our data. Social media has made us the product, and ads follow us around the internet, as well as between our devices. If we don’t decide how we’re going to give our resources to, there’s an army of marketers standing ready to make those decisions on our behalf. So how do we become good stewards of our resources?
Defining our priorities
We need to get clear on what’s most important to us; this will help us prioritize. We do that by setting goals and clarifying our core values.
Conducting an audit
Once you’ve solidified your goals and values, it’s time to look at how you’re currently spending your resources. You do that by auditing your time, attention, and money.
When you’re ready to audit your time and attention, simply write everything you’re doing and focusing on over the course of a week. I recommend breaking it down to 30 minute increments. This will help you understand if how you’re spending your time and attention is aligned with your priorities.
You can audit your spending by reviewing your cash flow and budget. Look back over the past three months of transactions. This will help you understand if how you’re spending your money is aligned with your priorities.
If you want help in this process, check out the Strive Online Bootcamp.
Positioning yourself for success
I’m a big fan of personal responsibility and self-discipline. But I also recognize those things can take time to develop. Until you’re strong in those areas, put some guardrails in place as an SOP (standard operating procedure).
A standard operating procedure is a set of step-by-step instructions compiled by an organization to help their people get what needs to get done, completed.
If it’s for an organization, why would an individual have one?
If you have a simple, straightforward life, you probably don’t need one. Odds are, you have a complex life with a lot of moving parts. The more you can systematize and put structure around the things that need to get done, the better.
- Checklists. One day, perhaps many of the things you need to be successful will be second nature. Until that day, make a checklist for everything that needs doing. For example, create a checklist for weekly meal prep so you leave nothing out.
- Calendar. What gets scheduled, gets done. If you don’t put all of your important activities into your calendar, they’ll get bumped by some other “emergency.” For example, schedule a day each month to go through your finances and to review your investments.
- Automate. The more we can take our hands off the wheel, the better. For example, set up automatic bill pay and automatic contributions to your saving and investment accounts.
- Delegate. Get a trainer, financial advisor, or a coach. If there’s an area you lack in, find someone or something that can support you in your change.
I don’t want this to appear I’m doing a commercial for outsourcing, I’m not. You can do this yourself. Again, be honest with yourself about whether you want to spend the time and attention it will take to get where you want to go.
If you find you need additional help, then look at outsourcing.
The only way to live how you want is to know how you want to live. Getting clear on what you want, and paying close attention to how you’re allocating your most important resources will go a long way to helping you get what you want. It will help you find the right balance in your life.
If you’d like to kick-start your pursuit of balance, check out the Strive Online Bootcamp.
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