How to Manage Time With 10 Tips That Work

Chances are good that, at some time in your life, you’ve taken a time management class, read about it in books, and tried to use an electronic or paper-based day planner to organize, prioritize and schedule your day. “Why, with this knowledge and these gadgets,” you may ask, “do I still feel like I can’t get everything done I need to?”

The answer is simple. Everything you ever learned about managing time is a complete waste of time because it doesn’t work.

Before you can even begin to manage time, you must learn what time is. A dictionary defines time as “the point or period at which things occur.” Put simply, time is when stuff happens.

There are two types of time: clock time and real time. In clock time, there are 60 seconds in a minute, 60 minutes in an hour, 24 hours in a day and 365 days in a year. All time passes equally. When someone turns 50, they are exactly 50 years old, no more or no less.

In real time, all time is relative. Time flies or drags depending on what you’re doing. Two hours at the department of motor vehicles can feel like 12 years. And yet our 12-year-old children seem to have grown up in only two hours.

Related: Spring-Cleaning Tips for Your Business

Which time describes the world in which you really live, real time or clock time?

The reason time management gadgets and systems don’t work is that these systems are designed to manage clock time. Clock time is irrelevant. You don’t live in or even have access to clock time. You live in real time, a world in which all time flies when you are having fun or drags when you are doing your taxes.

The good news is that real time is mental. It exists between your ears. You create it. Anything you create, you can manage. It’s time to remove any self-sabotage or self-limitation you have around “not having enough time,” or today not being “the right time” to start a business or manage your current business properly.

There are only three ways to spend time: thoughts, conversations and actions. Regardless of the type of business you own, your work will be composed of those three items.

As an entrepreneur, you may be frequently interrupted or pulled in different directions. While you cannot eliminate interruptions, you do get a say on how much time you will spend on them and how much time you will spend on the thoughts, conversations and actions that will lead you to success.

Related: Tips for a More Productive Day

Practice the following techniques to become the master of your own time:

  1. Carry a schedule and record all your thoughts, conversations and activities for a week. This will help you understand how much you can get done during the course of a day and where your precious moments are going. You’ll see how much time is actually spent producing results and how much time is wasted on unproductive thoughts, conversations and actions.
  2. Any activity or conversation that’s important to your success should have a time assigned to it. To-do lists get longer and longer to the point where they’re unworkable. Appointment books work. Schedule appointments with yourself and create time blocks for high-priority thoughts, conversations, and actions. Schedule when they will begin and end. Have the discipline to keep these appointments.
  3. Plan to spend at least 50 percent of your time engaged in the thoughts, activities and conversations that produce most of your results.
  4. Schedule time for interruptions. Plan time to be pulled away from what you’re doing. Take, for instance, the concept of having “office hours.” Isn’t “office hours” another way of saying “planned interruptions?”
  5. Take the first 30 minutes of every day to plan your day. Don’t start your day until you complete your time plan. The most important time of your day is the time you schedule to schedule time.
  6. Take five minutes before every call and task to decide what result you want to attain. This will help you know what success looks like before you start. And it will also slow time down. Take five minutes after each call and activity to determine whether your desired result was achieved. If not, what was missing? How do you put what’s missing in your next call or activity?
  7. Put up a “Do not disturb” sign when you absolutely have to get work done.
  8. Practice not answering the phone just because it’s ringing and e-mails just because they show up. Disconnect instant messaging. Don’t instantly give people your attention unless it’s absolutely crucial in your business to offer an immediate human response. Instead, schedule a time to answer email and return phone calls.
  9. Block out other distractions like Facebook and other forms of social media unless you use these tools to generate business.
  10. Remember that it’s impossible to get everything done. Also remember that odds are good that 20 percent of your thoughts, conversations and activities produce 80 percent of your results.

10 New Ideas for Making Money on the Side

Every year we make the same resolutions, like losing weight or to quit smoking. What about making more money?

While there proven ways to make extra cash on the side, even if you have a full-time job, if those haven’t worked-out for you in years past, then consider these 10 new ideas for earning some additional money on the side.

1. Join the sharing economy.

“The sharing economy is growing at an exponential rate,” says Nigel Wilson, managing director at Hitwise. “Thousands of sharing economy companies have sprouted up around the world, and consumers are actively engaging in collaborative consumption.

According to PwC, 44 percent of all adults in the U.S. are aware of the sharing economy and 19 percent have engaged in a sharing economy transaction. It is imperative for brands to consider how to support and participate in collaborative consumption, rather than compete against it.”

The sharing economy is exploding and the largest demographic in the country, millennials, have embraced it. For 2017, look beyond Uber, Lyft and AirBnb when looking to tap into this market. You can rent out your car on Turo, camera equipment on Cameralends, snowboard or bike on Spinlister and, if you own one, your sailboat on Sailo. Besides renting out the stuff that you already own, you can deliver home-cooked meals with Umi-Kitchen.

Related: How Millennials Are Defining the Sharing Economy

2. Launch a box subscription service.

If you want to tap your local or niche market then a box subscription service is the place to start. Over the last couple of years we’ve seen an explosion of box subscription services in niches ranging from beauty to food to gaming to novelty gifts. Since the goods or services are delivered to the customer each month, and it has a recurring billing model, it can quickly become a lucrative and passive source of income. Here’s a list of possible box service ideas to get you started.

3. Take over a mobile food truck.

More and more people, especially those between the ages of 18 to 34, are patronizing food trucks and that’s why the food truck industry is expected to surpass $985 million by 2019. For savvy entrepreneurs, food trucks are an appealing business because it’s inexpensive to start, isn’t strapped down to a one location, can be a part-time side gig and you don’t have to start from scratch. Every day thousands of baby boomers retire. If you know any baby boomer looking to get out of the food industry, consider purchasing their established business, which should include customers, recipes, and equipment at the very least.

My friend Keith Crossley was able to purchase several food trucks and recently opened several restaurants. It took him almost four years but over that time he was able to build a thriving business for himself. It all started trying to make money on the side and turned into his full time thriving business. It’s possible for you to do the same. His original investment was less than $35,000.

4. Earn cash by downloading apps.

I’ll be honest, you aren’t going to make a fortune downloading the following apps but you can make some extra cash each month by doing very little. Here’s some of my personal favorites:

  • The Swagbucks app pays you for answering simple survey questions.
  • Media Insiders pays you for watching television.
  • Stash gives you $5 to start investing.
  • Clink will give you $5 to start saving
  • When you walk, Bitwalking will pay you in a virtual currency called Bitwalking Dollars.
  • Nielsen Homescan gives you cash for scanning your grocery receipts.
  • Achievement pays you for completing healthy activities.
  • MobileXpression will give you cash, gift cards, and merchandise for surfing online.
  • The Ibotta app pays you for taking pics of your receipts.
  • Paribus scans your emails for receipts and will issue a refund if there’s a price drop.

Related: The Sharing Economy Isn’t a Niche. It’s the Future of Market Capitalism

5 Write to Congress.

Writing has long been a favorite side-gig for people. However, with the 2016 presidential election, don’t be surprised to see an influx of letters to Congress. And, you may be able cash-in on this trend. DDC Public Affairs and NextWave are bipartisan advocacy groups that launch grassroots political campaigns on issues ranging from energy, healthcare, taxes, and defense.

All of these hire people to call all constituents or advocates and then transfer their opinions into written letters. You’re assigned campaigns, but you can reject them if you want. They expect you to work 20-25 hours per week and you start-off at $12 to $15 per hour.

6. Invest in real estate.

If you aren’t working full-time or are already strapped for cash, then becoming a landlord probably isn’t the wisest decision. But, if you’re looking to make some extra cash, then you could consider invest in real estate. The reason? The housing market is looking strong for the foreseeable future.

Best of all, sites like Realty Mogul allow you to invest in commercial real estate for as little as $5,000.

7. Become an Instagram consultant.

Instagram had an incredible 2016. And, expect 2017 to be even better. Thanks to the Facebook-owned platform getting serious about attracting businesses, and launching exciting features like live video and Instagram Stories, a lot of brands are going to start promoting themselves on ‘the gram.’ If you’re a frequent Instagram user, have a passion for photography, and are a social media whiz, then you can start your own Instagram consulting business on-the-side.

8. EMV security consultant.

There are now around 300 million chip-card in-use by consumers with 1.2 million merchants accepting chip cards. Even though the transition to EMV is in full-swing, it’s expected that there will be an increase in fraud.

If you have security experience, or are knowledgeable in EMV, then you could start your own EMV security consulting business where you can instruct small business owners and their employees how to properly use EMV readers and inform them on the latest security measures.

Related: 5 Ways to Participate in the Bitcoin Revolution

9. Invest in bitcoin.

Bitcoin had a very good 2016. That should carry over into 2017 and beyond. In fact, some experts believe that the price for bitcoin will reach $1,000 within the next year, which would be a 40 percent increase. This is because of an increase in usage, more adoption, an increase in investments, and remittance in emerging markets like India.

10. Go green.

Millennials are extremely conscious about the environment. For example, 61 percent of millennials want to sign up for a digital application which can allow them to track their energy usage and control their household climate. That means that there’s a huge demand for “green” businesses in the near future.

Looking for a place to start? Here are a additional ways to make money on the side!

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11 Secrets That Made These Entrepreneurs Millions.

These 11 mega-successful entrepreneurs, and members of The Oracles, share the most important piece of advice that helped them close millions of dollars in deals. Their tips will save you years of wasted effort and help you mirror their success.

Melanie Perkins
Image Credit: The Oracles

1. Build a strong foundation.

If raising capital, first seek advice from investors. It’s a smart way to avoid rejection and learn how to improve your pitch deck. Execute your company goals, return with an improved pitch, and eventually, you’ll land investment (it took us three years from the first meeting).

“It took us three years from the first meeting [until we landed our first investment dollars].”  –Melanie Perkins

Here are some hard lessons we learned. One, don’t promise to raise capital by a certain date; you’ll look like a failure if you don’t close the deal in time. Two, avoid needing capital. Investors ironically want to invest in companies that will succeed regardless. Three, don’t prematurely raise capital. Grow your company as far as possible alone; you’ll learn many important lessons and how to execute. Most importantly, you’ll have time to figure things out without a ticking time bomb as you ramp-up expenses. (We had our first company for five years before landing investment for Canva. This ensured we learned many critical lessons before turning up the heat.) —Melanie Perkins, co-founder and CEO of Canva, who just doubled her company’s valuation to $345 million

Tim Draper
Image Credit: The Oracles

2. Use tactical empathy.

When the stakes are high, they are usually high for everyone. Be reasonable, but stay firm on the issues that matter most to you. Everyone will have slightly different motivations—try to ensure you understand them all. Treat everyone fairly, lay out your concerns and issues honestly, and expect the same from others. Issues that can matter in addition to cash, debt and equity are timing, responsibilities, stakeholders, communications and future opportunities. Tim Draper, founding partner of DFJ

Tai Lopez
Image Credit: The Oracles

3. You must be liked.

A finance mentor once told me, “Most deals are done on the golf course.” People do business with those they like. You need to be likeable. Here’s how: One, master reading personality types. Are they extroverted or introverted? What motivates them? Financial gain? Freedom? Status? Two, adjust your pitch. If I’m negotiating in China, it’s courteous to speak the language they understand. Three, like attracts like. People are more attracted as you adjust your personality to theirs. I’ve made money online and in conventional business by reminding people of their values and showing how I support their worldview. Tai Lopez, investor and advisor to many multimillion-dollar businesses who has built an eight-figure online empire; connect with Tai on Facebook or Snapchat

Maury Rogow
Image Credit: The Oracles

4. Help the other side of the table win.

When in negotiations, find the negotiator’s personal and professional wins, and do all you can to help them achieve those wins, even if they are outside your negotiation. It could be a new job, a promotion, an introduction—make it happen. Remember, the person on the other side of the table is just trying to keep their team safe. Help them achieve this goal, because they are afraid, on some level, of making a career-ending decision. It is your job to help this person look good! Maury Rogow, CEO of Rip Media Group

Craig Handley
Image Credit: The Oracles

5. Don’t be afraid to walk away.

At one time, we were making $50,000 a week in profit. Life was beautiful. But one of our key clients made a change in their businesssuddenly we were losing $70,000 a week. We were forced to cut everywhere. Frustrated, I asked a friend for advice. He explained that U.S. businesspeople are the worst negotiators in the world. We think a final offer is a final; in other countries, a deal hasn’t been properly negotiated until someone walks away.

We used this strategy in every area of our business. We proposed extreme cuts with every vendor. They all tried to negotiate, so we told every vendor that we were leaving. After a few days, we reached out with one last opportunity to keep our business. Eventually, we saved about $4 million in annual expenses. Don’t be afraid to walk away. Rather, you should walk away and return to the table to get the best pricing. Craig Handley, cofounder and CEO of ListenTrust

James Swanwick
Image Credit: The Oracles

6. Learn how to sell before it’s too late.

Learn how to sell now. In one year, I sold $2.7 million worth of programs over the telephone—after I finally learned sales techniques. This has probably cost me $20 million in lost revenue from missed sales in my 30s. Even if you feel that you don’t like sales and it makes you uncomfortable, too bad. Learn it anyway. Sales is a great thing. Get a sales mentor to coach you. Get on the phone. Start practicing sales techniques. You are helping customers solve problems and take action. When you rewire your brain around it and feel good about selling, you can make millions of dollars. James Swanwick, entrepreneur, author, and CEO of Swanwick Sleep and the 30-Day No Alcohol Challenge

Com Mirza
Image Credit: The Oracles

7. Create win-win-win situations in every deal.

I enter every negotiation with two premeditated outcomes: One, the line in the sand that I’m not going to budge from regarding specific terms and conditions. Two, how to create win-win-win situations for everybody involved in the deal. Many deals fall apart because someone doesn’t get what they want. Com Mirza, CEO of Mirza Holdings and “The $500 Million Man”; failed in eight companies back-to-back and today runs a nine-figure empire with over 600 employees

Roy McDonald
Image Credit: The Oracles

8. Limit exposure to 20 percent of assets.

Exposure to any project should be limited to 20 percent of one’s assets. I’ve seen people do 10 transactions with nine of them profitable, and do one transaction that took out all the profit from the other nine. And, that one transaction took out the whole company as well. Roy McDonald, founder and CEO of OneLife

Evan Luthra
Image Credit: The Oracles

9. Leverage the power of human capital by creating systems.

Always leverage human capital to multiply your time and output. I do not write a single line of code, but my employees collectively have written millions of lines of codes to execute my projects. While they are paid dollars for the hours they put in, I’m paid millions for the projects they build. I have set processes in place that my employees follow. I don’t visit my office for months at a stretch because I am busy living life or traveling around the world. Evan Luthra, CEO of EL Group International

Scott Oldford
Image Credit: The Oracles

10. Create a predictable way to generate leads.

Don’t rely on luck. I see a lot of businesses rely on relationships, networking, proposals and the next referral. I built a multimillion-dollar business on this. Then it failed. If you don’t have a predictable way to generate leads such as the SSFMethod of lead generation, your ability to grow quickly and sustainably will be tough. It took me going $726,000 into debt to learn the hard way. If you don’t have automated lead generation, you don’t have a business—you have a hobby. Scott Oldford, founder of INFINITUS

Neil Twa
Image Credit: The Oracles

11. Get out of your own way.

Once upon a time, I’d spend way too much time talking the about a deal and not talking to the people behind it. Once I learned the difference, that all deals are people and all people matter, I learned to focus on their outcome and got to know the person first. The years I wasted, the deals I lost, the goals I could have accomplished, these are all the things I could have avoided by just putting the other person’s needs first. —Neil Twa, cofounder of eCom Pro Academy

Want to share your insights like those above in a future column? If you’re an experienced entrepreneur, please get in touch here.

Want to suggest a future topic for these entrepreneurs to answer? and it’s very possible we’ll make your suggestion the focus of a future article!

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