Work Hard or Work Smart?

work smart not hard

Several years ago, five to be exact, I had never heard the term “work smart.” I didn’t know the difference between working hard and working smart because working hard was all I knew how to do. If I needed more money the only thing I knew to do was to work more hours. If my current job didn’t allow me to work anymore hours than I was already working then I just had to get a second job. If that wasn’t enough to earn what I needed to earn then I started doing other income producing activities on the side, which took up more time. Trading hours for dollars was common and it’s what I became accustomed to.

Trading hours for dollars was common and it’s what I became accustomed to.

Five years ago I was working a full-time 8-5 job practicing law, running a CrossFit box before and after my full-time job, owned and operated an online fitness apparel company, and was also putting designs on clothing on sites like Zazzle and CafePress to earn some extra income. All of that lead to me working 18 hours a day. So I know what working hard and working a lot is, but working smart was not on my radar.

A lot of people who own businesses or make investments tend to look at the ROI (return on investment) before they put money into something. I was on the other end of the spectrum. I was working so hard because I didn’t have any money to begin with. The only thing I had to invest was my time. It wasn’t until 5 years ago when I was introduced to an opportunity that allowed me to earn a lot more money with a lot less time, which forced me to value my time more. Instead of spending several hours a week on my online apparel business, I decided to close that business; not because it wasn’t successful, it was actually very successful, but I made that decision because at that time I was earning nearly three times that amount with the same amount of time doing something else. I decided to spend my time where I would get the greatest return for my time investment.

When I understood that I began to look at all areas of my life where I was spending income producing time. The next thing on the chopping block was the CrossFit box. I LOVE LOVE LOVE training people! It’s a passion of mine, but I had debt to eliminate and a serious financial hole that I had to climb out of and CrossFit was taking up a lot of time out of my schedule, but wasn’t producing the income I needed. In my first month of this new opportunity I replaced what I made running the CrossFit box and several months later I walked away from training.

A couple months after that I met my wife. We got married and then 11 months later were blessed with a beautiful baby girl. Needless to say I didn’t want to spend the majority of my time working and instead wanted to spend it with what mattered the most – my family. So I looked at what was taking up most of my time which was my full-time job. In my first year with my new business opportunity I nearly matched my salary practicing law and in my second year I nearly doubled it. So I didn’t have to be a rocket scientist to realize my time practicing law was worth less than half of my time building my business. In 2016 I walked away from that too.

I posted this question on social media earlier this week: “Would you rather work 8 hours at $10/hour ($80 in 8 hours) OR work 10 minutes and earn $80? (10 min. vs 8 hours for the same pay)”

Seems pretty simple, right? You’re probably thinking “I’d be a fool to work 7 hours and 50 minutes more than I need” yet people do it every day.

too busyThere are so many opportunities out there that produce a much higher ROI, but people either 1) Don’t know about them; 2) Know about them, but they talk themselves out of it without trying (this is the biggest one); or 3) Think they’re too busy to take on anything else (if this is you and you got to this point of this article then go back and read everything above again because you missed it).

The point of all this is that you don’t have to spend time away from the things you want to do or the people you want to be around and doing so is by your own choosing because now you know there’s an opportunity out there that’ll give you that time freedom – one where you can work smart and not hard. Be different than the “masses” because many times the “m” is silent. 😉

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Give Things Up to Go Up – A Simple Exchange

The quality is poor in this picture on the left, but then again so was the quality of my life back then. For YEARS I lived a life where the most common question among my friends wasn't "are we going out tonight" and instead was "where are we going out to drink tonight." It was an every day thing. Getting drunk wasn't ever the goal. We just wanted to get drinks after work. It was just a social thing - what everyone did. It was a formed habit. The topic of conversation each night... gossip, gossip, and more gossip. Until 2013 that's just what I did and then I had a sort of awakening one day. I don't even know how to explain it. I just remember meeting everyone out one night after work and after the gym and when I got to the bar I had a moment where time nearly stood still. I saw people whose marriages were falling apart from constant drinking, I saw people cheating on their significant others, I saw people getting in fights in one corner of the bar, I saw people stumbling around slurring their speech and embarrassing themselves, among many other things. None of these things were commonplace by any means, but I think all of it was happening at once so God could show me that there was no bright future going down the track I was headed down. At that moment I walked out of the bar having not even had time to open up a tab and never turned back. So much time was wasted every day after work for years when I could've been spending time becoming a greater version of myself. I'll never get that time back and I really don't spend time concerned about that time lost. All I can control is the controllables and one controllable in my life is how I spend my time now. If I have spare time now I listen to personal growth and development podcasts. I listen to talks and watch YouTube videos on business. Mariah and I watch videos and read books to grow deeper in our faith. We are committed to growth in all meaningful areas of our lives. This is not a condemnation on drinking or a judgment on anyone who does. I don't think it's wrong or bad to have a glass of wine or a beer, but that's not where I was at back then and the frequency of the social drinking was terrible. I just simply realized that I didn't know anyone's life that was improved from it and knew that nothing in my life was going to get better from continuing that social habit. I was right. When I broke that habit and began spending that wasted time on something meaningful my whole life changed. Look at what has happened since I made those positive changes! I'm married to an AMAZING woman and mother, I now have two BEAUTIFUL children, I have hung out with my man-crush Drew Brees TWICE, I built an incredible business with my wife which provides an awesome residual income stream for our family, and I had the honor of speaking on stage in Dallas Cowboy Stadium at a leadership event in front of 20,000 people! Time is important and is our most valuable resource. Once it's gone it's gone and you'll never get it back. Spend the time you have on this side of the grass wisely. Create meaningful relationships and know that your friends and associations are either stretching you or choking you. Cut bad habits, cut the cable, quit reading and watching the news, and instead spend time doing things that matter. "Let him who would enjoy a good future waste none of his present." Roger Babson #beforeandafter #winning #growtogo #blessed

The quality is poor in this picture on the left, but then again so was the quality of my life back then. For YEARS I lived a life where the most common question among my friends wasn’t “are we going out tonight” and instead was “where are we going out to drink tonight.” It was an every day thing. Getting drunk wasn’t ever the goal. We just wanted to get drinks after work. It was just a social thing – what everyone did. It was a formed habit. The topic of conversation each night… gossip, gossip, and more gossip. Until 2013 that’s just what I did and then I had a sort of awakening one day.

I don’t even know how to explain it. I just remember meeting everyone out one night after work and after the gym and when I got to the bar I had a moment where time nearly stood still. I saw people whose marriages were falling apart from constant drinking, I saw people cheating on their significant others, I saw people getting in fights in one corner of the bar, I saw people stumbling around slurring their speech and embarrassing themselves, among many other things. None of these things were commonplace by any means, but I think all of it was happening at once so God could show me that there was no bright future going down the track I was headed down. At that moment I walked out of the bar having not even had time to open up a tab and never turned back.

So much time was wasted every day after work for years when I could’ve been spending time becoming a greater version of myself. I’ll never get that time back and I really don’t spend time concerned about that time lost. All I can control is the controllables and one controllable in my life is how I spend my time now. If I have spare time now I listen to personal growth and development podcasts. I listen to talks and watch YouTube videos on business. Mariah and I watch videos and read books to grow deeper in our faith. We are committed to growth in all meaningful areas of our lives. It is a simple exchange we chose to make. We have chosen to exchange pouring alcohol into ourselves for the pouring of leadership and personal development into ourselves.

This is not a condemnation on drinking or a judgment on anyone who does. I don’t think it’s wrong or bad to have a glass of wine or a beer, but that’s not where I was at back then and the frequency of the social drinking was terrible. I just simply realized that I didn’t know anyone’s life that was improved from it and knew that nothing in my life was going to get better from continuing that social habit. I was right. When I broke that habit and began spending that wasted time on something meaningful my whole life changed.

Look at what has happened since I made those positive changes! I’m married to an AMAZING woman and mother, I now have two BEAUTIFUL children, I have hung out with my man-crush Drew Brees TWICE, I built an incredible business with my wife which provides an awesome residual income stream for our family, and I had the honor of speaking on stage in Dallas Cowboy Stadium at a leadership event in front of 20,000 people!

Time is important and is our most valuable resource. Once it’s gone it’s gone and you’ll never get it back. Spend the time you have on this side of the grass wisely. Create meaningful relationships and know that your friends and associations are either stretching you or choking you. Cut bad habits, cut the cable, quit reading and watching the news, and instead spend time doing things that matter.

“Let him who would enjoy a good future waste none of his present.” – Roger Babson

Quote of the Day – Comparison Is The Thief of Joy (# 2)

“Average people compare themselves to others; successful people compare themselves to their potential.”

Something I’ve noticed over the last several years is that so many people count themselves out of something or tell themselves they can’t do something because they compare themselves to somebody else. People give up on their dreams because of it, which is a pretty depressing thought. I know people who know what they want and know how to get it, but they will tell themselves they can’t do it because they look at the success of some other person and will say something like, “I can’t be successful like them because I’m not as talented as they are” or any number of reasons. They compare themselves to someone else and count themselves out because they don’t believe they’ll be as good at what they want to do as someone else is. They rid themselves of joy and the success they could have in life.

Comparison is the thief of joy.

Here’s a perfect example from a personal experience. At the time I was introduced to AdvoCare I was about as lean as I had ever been and didn’t really have any weight to lose. I saw a lot of people having success in AdvoCare and I noticed that nearly all of them lost a considerable amount of weight. So I told myself, “I’ll never be successful in this business because I don’t have a great weight loss story.” I began to count myself out before I even started. I compared myself to others and chalked their success up to some incredible weight loss story. Luckily I broke out of that mindset and decided not to allow comparison to steal my joy. I did what I wanted to do and now I have been able to retire from the practice of law at the age of 35, both my wife and I are work from home parents, we have eliminated six figures of debt, and we have complete time freedom to do what we want and when we want.

So if you want something in life, put your blinders on. Don’t look to your left or right. Focus on the end goal and achieve it. It doesn’t matter what anyone else is doing.

comparison is the thief of joy

Don’t Leave Buttprints

sands of timeI know this sounds pretty gloomy, but your life is ending. That’s one thing we all know for sure. Death is inescapable. It’s something I’ve been thinking a lot about lately… not necessarily death, but rather the time we have here on earth between conception and the day we breath our last breath. So I’ve been thinking about life actually and the limited time we spend living it. Time is precious, no doubt, and we never know when ours is going to end. We get one chance at life to do whatever we are going to do and with every passing moment we will never get that time back again. Unless you’re Dr. Strange or Superman, you can’t rewind time and have a do-over.

Knowing that my time is limited, I started thinking about how I’ve spent my 35 years on earth so far. I also asked myself, “If I die today, would I be able to look back at my life and be truly satisfied with how I spent my years here?” Right now the answer would be “no” and it may always be no, but that’s what will keep me striving for greatness.

I would love for everyone to be able to answer these questions for themselves:

If I die today, would I be able to look back at my life and be truly satisfied with how I spent my years here?

If the answer to the above question is “yes,” then WHY is it “yes?”
If the answer to the above question is “no,” then what can you do to live a life that you’d be satisfied with?

What kind of legacy to you want to leave?

Do you want to be remembered as a world-class spouse who became an example to other married couples, which strengthen the Sacrament of Marriage?

Do you want to be remembered as a world-class parent who sets the bar for other parents strive to hit?

Tell me if this doesn’t sober you up: Do you want your mark on this earth to be gravestone and some cloudy memories of you, which will die with the people you experienced those memories with?

“You can‘t leave footprints in the sands of time if you‘re sitting on your butt. And who wants to leave buttprints in the sands of time?”

The question is, what are you going to do with the time you’re given and with the rest of the sand in the hour glass. This is the BEST video that I have found which stresses this point. Take 5 minutes out of your day to watch it:

 

Quote of the Day – Greatness Is A Choice (# 1)

“You have greatness within you. You are designed for greatness, but you are not predestined for greatness. That’s a choice.”

Everyone has greatness within them, but they have to choose to realize it. It’s easy to get caught up in the way of the world and to go with the flow. Being comfortable in your daily routine is easy. Most of us don’t love it, but it’s hard to break out of that comfort zone most of the time, but out of the comfort zone is where you’ll realize your greatness and find success. Becoming great doesn’t just happen. It’s a choice. One of the most influential quotes on greatness I’ve ever heard was by Pope Benedict XVI:

“The world promises you comfort, but you were not made for comfort. You were made for greatness.”

How profound is that!? Don’t conform to the ways of the world just to be comfortable only to draw near to the end of your life and realize your potential. Start today! Drink a Spark, break out of your comfort zone, and own this day! “You don’t have to be great to start; but you have to start to be great!”

The world promises you comfort, but you were not made for comfort. You were made for greatness
greatness is a decision available to everyone

greatness is largely a matter of conscious choice and discipline

Greatness is birthed through hardship and testing. It arises choice by choice

Greatness is not a function of circumstance. Greatness is a matter of conscious choice and discipline

Dear Camille… This Thanksgiving Will Be Different

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Dear Camille,

It’s been a very long time since I have written you and before I tell you why this will be a better Thanksgiving, I have to update you on all your milestones. I have been keeping myself busy so that you can have an even better Thanksgiving this year than you did last year. The last time I wrote you was just after your first Christmas and A LOT has changed since then. Sorry it has been so long. You’ve been RUNNING everywhere and have picked up a ton of words such as shoes (“ishes” as you like to call them), Jesus, Momma, Papa, Nana, bar, ball, bottle, cookie, cheese, chicken, brother (“bruba”), no, woof, puppy, and many more. You also know where your hair, eyes, nose, toes, ears, mouth, belly button, and hands are! You are so smart!!!

You’ve been climbing on EVERYTHING and love being around your brother. In fact, you can’t even walk by him without hugging him and kissing him on the head. It’s one of the sweetest things we’ve ever seen. He smiles more for you than he does for anyone and yesterday he just made his first real laugh. He’s super happy in general, but by far the happiest when he’s around you.

So let me tell you why this Thanksgiving will be different. A few years ago, before you were even born, I knew that I wanted to give your mom the opportunity to be home with you all the time. I knew that before I even knew your mom. So I removed all excuses and went to work so that when I met your mom she could have that opportunity. I was able to make that happen in a short amount of time and I thought that if I could accomplish that goal then all would be good; however, after you were born something changed. I still wanted your mom home with you, but that wasn’t going to be good enough for my little girl. You deserved much more than to just have your mom home with you.

Every day as I would leave to go to my job I would kiss you goodbye probably 50 times and you would smile. Then when you could stand up you would stand in the window of the door crying and screaming “Daddy!” every day as I left. It broke my heart to leave you every day. There were many mornings when I had to fight back tears backing out of the driveway and some mornings when I lost that fight. Then throughout the day I would watch you grow up through pictures or videos that your mom would send me while I was at work and it would tear me up even more. I would have the hour after I got home from work to spend with you and the majority of that was feeding you, bathing you, and then putting you to bed. It wasn’t enough for you and it wasn’t enough for me.

Then when your brother was born I took 12 weeks off of work and it hit me. Why not just always be home with your mom and the two of you? After talking it over with your mom we have decided that we would both be home to raise you and your brother and that is why this Thanksgiving will be better than the last. So instead of just enjoying the holiday weekend and then going back to a job on Monday only to see you cry in the doorway, I will wake up Monday to get you out of bed, hug you, kiss you, feed you breakfast, take you to the park or even chase you around the house because I can. I no longer have anyone telling me that I have to come into work from 8:00 to 5:00. I no longer have to ask off for vacation to take you to fun trips around the country. I have fired the boss and given up the 40 hour work week so that now we can always be on vacation my little love! We no longer live life on someone else’s terms. We live life on our own terms. Happy Thanksgiving Sweetheart!

I love you,

“Dada”

Snickerdoodle & Oreo Protein Cookies

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Last night I decided to make Snickerdoodle Protein Cookies with the brand new seasonal Snickerdoodle Meal Replacement Shakes using our friend Brandi’s AdvoOreo recipe! They are so quick and easy AND DELICIOUS!

First of all these are seasonal shakes as well as the Caramel Macchiato and Pumpkin Spice shakes. So if you want some of these you better get them while they last because once they are gone they are GONE!

What’s Needed:

  • 1 cup almond flour or 1 cup of raw almonds made into almond flour in a food processor
  • 2 Packets of Snickerdoodle Meal Replacement Shakes
  • 1/3 cup pure maple syrup (or raw honey)
  • 1/3 cup coconut oil
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • OPTIONAL: “Enjoy Life” Chocolate Morsels

Combine dry ingredients, then add wet ingredients; mix well. Dough will be sticky but drop by spoonfuls onto a cookie sheet, then form into what looks like a cookie. They will spread just a little tiny bit while baking, but they won’t rise, so don’t make them too thin or too thick.

Bake at 350 degrees for 10-15 mins (NOTE: Place oven racks closer to the upper middle of the oven).

If you would like to make the Snickerdoodle Oreo filling then while baking, prepare the filling in a separate bowl:

  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 packet of Vanilla Meal Replacement Shake
  • 3 Tbsp pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • OPTIONAL: “Enjoy Life” Chocolate Morsels

Combine ingredients in a small container, refrigerate until cookies are cooled. This will thicken while you wait.

Once the cookies have baked, spread the filling on one of them then top it off with another.

Great tasting hint: If you leave them in the fridge over night they taste even better!

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FOR MORE AWESOME RECIPES:

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