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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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

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”

Dear Camille… YOU’RE HERE!

Me and Camille

Dear Camille… YOU’RE HERE!

Finally my little angel! Your mom and I have long awaited the moment we would hold you in our arms and kiss your little face (we waited 288 days to be exact) and now you’re here and more beautiful than we could ever imagine! I have already filled up my phone memory THREE times in 11 days with pictures and videos of you! Your little sneezes, hiccups, yawns, and sighs are HILARIOUS and cute as can be.

There was quite a long journey for you to get here, but when you arrived it was quite the entrance. I have to tell you all about the day you got here! The doctor originally said that he thought you’d be here on the same exact due date my doctors expected me, March 17th, but you and God had something else in store. When you didn’t get here on the 17th, the doctor told your mom he was going to give you a little push about a week later to try and get you to come early and you certainly had a surprise for us. We were scheduled to go to the delivery room at 8:00 p.m. the night the doctor was going to help and instead at 2:00 a.m. you decided to break your bag of waters, which led to your mom changing undies a billion times and your mom sitting on a plastic garbage bag on the way to the hospital. 😉

Your mom and I arrived at the hospital a little after 3:00 a.m. and the doctor showed up about a couple hours later. You weren’t giving your mom big enough contractions at that point so the doctor gave your mom a new deadline of 2:00 p.m. before he administered any drugs. So we prayed and prayed and prayed that you would cause your mom to have contractions before then and lo and behold at 1:30 p.m. you did, but they weren’t strong enough for the doctor’s liking so he set another deadline for 4:00 p.m. and at 3:30 you got fo’ real, but your mom is tough (I had no idea how tough until the day you came).

I wish you could’ve seen your mom bringing you into this world. She was incredible! On an empty stomach and on two hours of sleep, she turned down pain relievers and prayed through every contraction. The nurses couldn’t believe that she brought you here naturally and even told her that most women would be screaming and breaking things and your mom just sat there with her eyes closed, breathing steadily, and continued to pray. I’ve never been more proud of her. Here’s a picture of her hours before you were born:

Mom and natural birth

Within twenty minutes of your mom actively pushing, I was able to assist you out of your mom and into my hands… yes, I delivered you. I looked down at your beautiful face and told you, “We love you Camille.” Then I handed you over to your mom and cut your umbilical cord once it stopped pulsating. You’ve been gorgeous since the day you were born. By the way, you’re ridiculously strong! When we placed you on your mom’s tummy we were all shocked that you leapfrogged up to her neck. I mean…. you got some air girl! Your mom says you’re a Catalyst baby. Then within the first fifteen minutes you lifted your head up and looked around the room! I know you don’t realize how incredible that is right now, but you will one day. Most babies can’t do that for a while!

I took a video of you right when we brought you to the nursery for your bath. Here it is!

I have to tell you some other funny things. I told your mom that I wouldn’t be changing any diapers, but she didn’t know I was joking. I’ve changed almost all of them with your mom and I’ve been smart about it. You may have noticed that I stand on the north end of your rear end. 🙂 It prevents me from close encounters with any of your surprises. Your mom, on the other hand, stands to the south and you’ve already sprayed her twice with your poop. Hahaha! We’ve had a good laugh over that. I was pretty impressed with the first one and I’m pretty sure your mom was too. It was like a 3-foot horizontal poop fountain! Gross… but HILARIOUS!

The great news for your mom is that she gets to change more diapers than me right now because she is now a full-time stay-at-home mommy thanks to AdvoCare! Now she gets to be with you every day and raise you instead of paying someone else to teach you good morals and your ABC’s. 😉 It’s what your mom has always wanted and now it’s come to fruition! One day you’ll realize how much of a blessing that is.

By the way, you eat A LOT! One time you ate and then decided to pin your mom down and hold her hostage so she couldn’t get up from the bed. I took a video of that too:

Your journey has just begun and there’s much more to see and learn in this world. I’ll write you some more soon my love.

Love,

Daddy

P.S. We had a professional photographer take photos of you being born and you’ll get to see them SOON!!! I also posted more pictures of you below.

Here is one when I told you how you got here the first time. In this picture you can see me telling you how the stork dropped you and mom and I caught you. 😉

How you got here - stork

 

Then here is us hanging out in the bed taking a selfie, which you thought was pretty funny:

Camille and me take a selfie

 

Here’s you passed out on my chest… you do this A LOT by the way:

Camille and me take a selfie

And here’s me holding you at your first doctor’s visit… passed out on my chest AGAIN (not complaining) 😉

Me and Camille

9 Things Rich People Do Differently Every Day

There are more than just a few things that I’ve done to build a successful part-time business that has allowed me to eliminate over $95,000 of debt in the last 19 months and that is paying me more than twice as much as practicing law is paying me. Here is a list of at least 9 of them:

– Originally posted on Business Insider: http://www.businessinsider.com/rich-people-daily-habits-2014-6

Paul Morigi / Stringer / Getty Images
Paul Morigi / Stringer / Getty Images

“What you do today matters.”

In fact, your daily habits may be a major determinant of your wealth.

“The metaphor I like is the avalanche,” says Thomas Corley, the author of “Rich Habits: The Daily Success Habits Of Wealthy Individuals.” “These habits are like snowflakes — they build up, and then you have an avalanche of success.”

Corley spent five years studying the lives of both rich people (defined as having an annual income of $160,000 or more and a liquid net worth of $3.2 million or more) and poor people (defined as having an annual income of $35,000 or less and a liquid net worth of $5,000 or less).

He managed to segment out what he calls “rich habits” and “poverty habits,” meaning the tendencies of those who fit in each group. But, Corley explains, everyone has some rich habits and some poverty habits. “The key is to get more than 50% to be rich habits,” he says.

And what are those rich habits that are so influential? Here are a few:

Rich people always keep their goals in sight.

“I focus on my goals every day.”
Rich people who agree: 62%
Poor people who agree: 6%

Not only do wealthy people set annual and monthly goals, but 67% of them put those goals in writing. “It blew me away,” says Corley. “I thought a goal was a broad objective, but the wealthy said a wish is not a goal.” A goal is only a goal, he says, if it has two things: It’s achievable, and there’s a physical action you can take to pursue it.

And they know what needs to be done today.

“I maintain a daily to-do list.”
Rich people who agree: 81%
Poor people who agree: 19%

Not only do the wealthy keep to-do lists, but 67% of them complete 70% or more of those listed tasks each day.

They don’t watch TV.

“I watch TV one hour or less per day.”
Rich people who agree: 67%
Poor people who agree: 23%

Similarly, only 6% of the wealthy watch reality shows, compared to 78% of the poor. “The common variable among the wealthy is how they make productive use of their time,” explains Corley. “They wealthy are not avoiding watching TV because they have some superior human discipline or willpower. They just don’t think about watching much TV because they are engaged in some other habitual daily behavior — reading.”

They read … but not for fun.

“I love reading.”
Rich people who agree: 86%
Poor people who agree: 26%

Sure, rich people love reading, but they favor nonfiction — in particular, self-improvement books. “The rich are voracious readers on how to improve themselves,” says Corley. In fact, 88% of them read for self-improvement for 30 minutes each day, compared to 2% of poor people.

Plus, they’re big into audio books.

“I listen to audio books during the commute to work.”
Rich people who agree: 63%
Poor people who agree: 5%

Even if you aren’t into audiobooks, you can make the most of your commute with any of these commute-friendly self-improvement activities.

They make a point of going above and beyond at the office.

“I do more than my job requires.”
Rich people who agree: 81%
Poor people who agree: 17%

It’s worth noting that while 86% of rich people (compared to 43% of poor) work an average of 50 or more hours a week, only 6% of the wealthy people surveyed found themselves unhappy because of work.

They aren’t hoping to win the jackpot.

“I play the lottery regularly.”
Rich people who agree: 6%
Poor people who agree: 77%

That’s not to say that the wealthy are always playing it safe with their money. “Most of these people were business owners who put their own money on the table and took financial risks,” explains Corley. “People like this aren’t afraid to take risks.”

They watch their waistline.

“I count calories every day.”
Rich people who agree: 57%
Poor people who agree: 5%

Wealthy people value their health, says Corley. “One of the individuals in my study was about 68 and worth about $78 million. I asked why he didn’t retire, and he looked at me like I was from Mars. He said, ‘I’ve spent the last 45 years exercising every single day and watching what I eat because I knew the end of my career would be my biggest earning years.’ If he can extend his career four to five years beyond everyone else, that’s about $7 million for him.”

And they take care of their smiles.

“I floss every day.”
Rich people who agree: 62%
Poor people who agree: 16%

Enough said.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/rich-people-daily-habits-2014-6#ixzz36k7vfWLI