Have you ever thought about how much your time was worth?
I’m sure a lot of you have, but I haven’t and maybe that’s what is holding me back from bigger and better things.
I’ve never bought into the whole, “I want to be a millionaire,” picture. It doesn’t work for me.
In fact, I’ve gone the other direction. I went from making $72,000 a year, to $55,000 a year, to roughly my present income of $35,000 a year. All by choice.
So, yeah, the whole money thing isn’t a priority. As long as I have the love of an amazing circle of family and a few close friends, a roof over my head, dependable transportation, a job that I respect and enjoy, and an emergency fund, I’m good.
And I have that.
However, Anthony Moore recently wrote “Pretend Your Time is Worth $1,000/Hour and You’ll Become 100x More Productive”, and the headline alone was enough to grab my attention.
It isn’t about becoming rich beyond your wildest dreams. It’s about upping your productivity game, and that I can buy into.
I started to reflect on how I’ve been spending my time lately and I’m not sure I would be worth $20 an hour.
A lot of procrastinating, being lazy, and doing everything but being productive.
While there are some legitimate reasons like getting acclimated to a career move and getting my husband to relax long enough to heal after two recent surgeries, my down time has been truly down time.
And yes, down time is necessary for self-care, but I seem to have taken it to the extreme.
To the point that the last time I published a piece on Medium was January 8.
So, I started to visualize what my time at $1,000 an hour would look like, and this is what I have determined so far:
Planning: Not only will I continue to be an amazing planner but I will follow through on those plans. I will determine what my upcoming week will look like on Sunday.
Action: I will put my butt in the chair. Whether it’s writing, working out, eating healthy meals, working hard for customers, or cultivating relationships, it’s all about action and consistency.
Check in: Each day I will look at my plans in the morning, check in midway during the day, reassess and make revisions as necessary.
Reflect: I will take 5–10 minutes to reflect each evening. That way I can make any adjustments for the following day. At the end of the week, I will take 20–30 minutes to understand what went well, what didn’t go as planned and why, and then begin the process of planning for the next week.
While I haven’t completely worked out the details, the four steps of planning, taking action, checking in, and reflecting will put me on the path to being more productive…and closer to earning $1,000 per hour.
Wow, life feels like it's happening at warp speed lately. I'm trying to catch my breath, but some days it's like a sprint from morning until night. Know what I mean?
Here are some quick nuggets:
*I started a new job on January 14. The high school counseling gig wasn't working for me, so I said, "Adios," at the end of the first semester and jumped into retail at the deep end of the pool. It's been a whirlwind but a great change so far. I have intentions of writing about it but it hasn't happened yet. Stay tuned!
*GTI Wednesday is still coming out weekly. If you haven't subscribed yet, you are so missing out. It's a five-minute midweek positivity boost. Go to the home page and get yourself subscribed!
*Today I Will is a bite-sized dose of focus each day. It's a one-sentence statement that gives you a challenge or a task to concentrate on for the day. Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org to be added to the list.
*If you haven't checked out our Facebook group, The Clutternators, come join us. We are just starting our first book club selection, Marie Kondo's, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. While our group is all about getting rid of clutter, we need to organize what we have left over. Ask to join the group and you're in. We are super positive with each other and offer great tips and suggestions.
*My book is FINALLY going to be launched. I know, I know, it's about time! I have the physical copy of the proof in my hands as we speak and I'm editing it one more time before I send it in for final revisions. So excited and pumped that Slices of Life from the Little Blue Desk will be a reality in March 2019!
Okay, that's it for now. How are you doing? Drop me a line and let me know. I would love to hear from you! :)
I read an article yesterday about writing. This writer said that writing every day is a necessity. And I get it. Sometimes I get lazy, lose my motivation, and am just not in the mood to write. It's those days where I need to do it anyway.
It's like anything in our lives where we are trying to make a change, a transformation of sorts. I learned a lot about this in Shaun T.'s book, T is for Transformation. It's part autobiography/memoir, part motivation, and part learning. It taught me that in order to truly transform, it takes long-term commitment. I admit I've been lacking that lately.
Some of it is getting into the flow of my new job. I trained for two weeks and now this week is the first one of my actual schedule. The hours are longer and it's a different type of work, so I'm getting into the flow of needing to organize better for time with my family, exercise, writing, and making healthy meals. Right now I'm kind of limping along until I get things in place.
It's understandable, but it's also an excuse. I have the time but I'm not allocating it very well yet. That's the hurdle I'm working to get over. Take this morning for example. I go to work at noon and so I have the entire morning to myself. Well, I was tired and so I slept for two more hours. I decided to bank some sleep since tonight will be a late night followed by an early morning tomorrow. However, that's two hours I lost that I could have been reading, writing, exercising, or planning healthy meals.
I suppose it's a lot of give and take and I really do need to give myself a break, cut myself some slack. However, it's a fine line between that and making excuses. That's what I need to watch out for as I'm sure we all do.
In the big picture, it comes down to the 'why' which is what I come back to time and time again in my writing. If we don't have a big enough 'why' then the motivation and inspiration will wane over time.
It's also important to look at the big picture. What do I want my life to look like in three months, six months, a year, three years, and five years from now? It's not enough to simply go day to day. They don't have to be concrete goals, but rather a direction or intention of what I want my life to look like and then design a plan to go in that direction.
The next few blog posts will be devoted to our 'why' as motivation and inspiration, looking at the big picture, devising a plan, and then following through on that plan. I hope you're as excited as I am for this series. I think it will provide the boost we both need! :)
At the end of the day, sometimes I wonder if I did anything right. Not that anything is particularly bad or wrong, I just wonder if I made a difference. I think it happens, because I'm looking for grand gestures rather than noticing the details.
Smiling at someone. Saying hi. Asking if I can help. Opening a door. Telling someone thank you. Giving a compliment. Telling my husband I appreciated him getting the mail. Sending a text to my dad to ask how his day is going. Checking in with my mom to see how her store is doing.
All of these examples make a difference.
We never know what someone is going through and our seemingly small gesture can make all the difference.
"Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle." --Socrates
Maybe she just found a lump in her breast. Maybe he just lost his job. Maybe he's worried about his best friend. Maybe she just got out of an abusive relationship.
We just don't know what battle someone is fighting, so it's up to us to make each other's load a little lighter.
And we all know this but it's still important to remind ourselves that no matter how small the gesture, we make a difference. We make a difference in the life of the other person, and in doing so, we make a difference in our own lives.
As strange as it might sound, when we do something kind for someone else, it ripples and multiplies.
It ripples in that the receiver may very easily become the giver for someone else.
It multiplies, because doing one thing often inspires us to do something else. It's that proverbial domino effect.
For example, when I open a door for someone and he says, "Thank you," it sends a little smile to my heart. I might then say, "Hi," to a stranger next. When she responds in kind, then it might easily prompt me to see if I can help someone with a task.
See how that works?
And at the end of the day, we have made a difference in the lives of others as well as our own.
"Positivity is the sunlight in your garden. You can't grow without it." -Shaun T.
Let that sink in for a moment. If there is no sunlight, a garden won't grow. Without positivity, you don't grow.
I've always thought of myself as a pretty positive person. I would say I'm 90% positive with 10% snarky. Maybe it's not quite that high, but I feel it's pretty close. A few years ago, I asked for feedback from a few trusted friends and colleagues. I wanted them to tell me three things I did well and three areas of improvement.
While not all of them responded, the ones who did both reinforced how I perceived myself but also gave me some insight to help me on my path to growth and enlightenment.
Doing something like that definitely got me out of my comfort zone but it was so worthwhile to me. You never know what someone is going to say, and I tried to get a cross-section of different people in my field to understand how I came across to them.
And the overwhelming aspect of me they pointed out as a strength was my ability to always be positive, even in stressful situations. They said I was calm and was the one who maintained a sense of balance when there was chaos. That was so insightful to me, because sometimes I am calm on the outside when I'm literally freaking out on the inside.
Much of that outside picture of calm I directly attribute to daily meditation practice. While I continue to strive to be calm on both the outside and inside, I know it's a continual process.
I'm currently being tested right now as I begin a new and different job opportunity. While there are similarities between education and the retail world, I know that my training will be completely different. I'm embarking on an adventure in unknown territory. There is a lot to learn, almost like taking the plunge into a foreign language in a new land.
However, it gets my brain thinking in different ways. When we continue to do something we've always done, we begin to get a complacent. Trying something out of our comfort zone is a great way to test what we know about ourselves, and I like that feeling of being challenged.
In the long run, I know it will help me grow in ways I never imagined possible. Bring on the sun!
I'm a lover of life, an eternal optimist, and I have an intense desire to add value through simple living and positive vibes.