Years ago, I lived in Los Angeles and was working as a CPA in a high-rise building surrounded by smog and stressed out people. Every day I would spend hours fighting traffic to get to my office, work very long days and then I would go home and return again the next day, like a faithful soldier, to repeat the madness. In a nutshell, my life consisted of traffic, work, sleep and was completely void of any personal enjoyment. I was trading all of my time for money.
Eventually, as I got older and my husband and I wanted to start a family, I wasn’t willing to trade my time for money anymore. I also wasn’t willing to live in a crowded city with smog, earthquakes and a heavy dose of crime. Our solution was to move to beautiful, safe, friendly Vermont! Jumping off of the corporate whirlwind and landing in Vermont was the best decision I ever made.
I have learned to live a much more balanced life and I no longer trade all of my time for money. My business is nationwide, thanks to the Internet, so my professional life is intact, in this rural environment, and I decide when I work, when I play and how much money I make. I dictate the terms of my life, not some corporation, and my life is now balanced, so that if the kids have a snow day I can go skiing with them.
I don’t think you need to move to a rural environment to avoid trading your time for money; that may be too drastic a solution for some and I don’t believe you have to choose money or time either. Here are a few steps you can take to help you reclaim your time while allowing you to live a balanced yet profitable life:
1. Figure out your four areas of focus in your life. What is most important to you? Once you have identified where your focus should be then all of your time, attention and money should go to these four areas. If you want to know where your focus currently is, take a look at your checkbook! Where we spend our money is very telling as to what our values are and where we spend our time. If you look at my checkbook, you will see my money goes to my family (food, skis, books), my health (gym membership), my business (more books) and a fair amount to my community (donations).
2.Maximize your time spent in business by leveraging every time saving tool available, such as the internet. I automate everything I can from lead generation to qualifying and only spend time in areas of my business that require my direct attention. My system of automation allows my business to produce income while I am off skiing.
3. Create a financial strategy that provides a residual stream of income, otherwise known as passive income. Passive income can be generated by investing, for example, or owning real estate and collecting rent. A few other passive income generating options would be network marketing or write a hit song and earn royalties. The goal is to create a stream of residual income, so that you earn the money you need, to support the life you desire without trading all of your time.
There are many paths to producing residual Income, and I encourage you to find the right opportunity for yourself. Look for a system that can be easily duplicated to continuously produce income and then you will have more of what matters in life – time.
At the end of life people never wish they made more money, but always wish for more time with the people they love. Relationships and experiences create the rich fabric of our life, so finding a way to make money without trading our precious time is a worthy goal.
Wishing you all a balanced yet profitable life!