“I Have No Time” Is a Lie, Time Is All You Have

I Have No Time Is an ExcuseStop lying to yourself when you tell yourself you don’t have time. Time is all you have! Let’s break down this myth once and for all.

1. Your Priorities Dictate Your Schedule

It’s not about having more time, it’s about doing the right things in the amount you’re allotted just like everyone else. Your way of setting priorities decides what you have time for. If you find yourself overwhelmed with work and without meaningful outcomes (revenue), then you must re-evaluate your priorities and focus on the work that generates the outcomes you desire. When you say you don’t have time, what you’re really saying is “this is not important enough to me.”

Start saying “No” more often. If you want a magic bullet for cleaning up your priorities in life then read “The Essentialism” book, it will give you a framework for de-cluttering your entire life. It surely did impact my personal and business life. Greg McKeown, author of the book, made it clear:

“We can either make our choices deliberately or allow other people’s agendas to control our lives.”

2. Delegate or Charge More

The lie that I often hear (something I’m guilty of too) is that you’re busy with client work fulfilling the services or doing your other business admin work that gives you no time to do either business development or marketing.

If you’re truly are busy with client work and yet not earning enough to hire help, it’s not about having more time. It’s about not charging enough, not charging what you’re worth! You need to re-evaluate your pricing and make sure you’re charging what your market is willing to pay, not what it costs you (hourly). That’s one of the reasons we stopped charging on an hourly basis at ProjectArmy, and that’s why you need to stop charging hourly rates if you still do. It’s not a sustainable pricing model, the better you get the less you get paid because you’re faster. When your business isn’t thriving, you’re hurting your clients as much as you’re hurting yourself (we’ll be covering pricing in later posts).

If business admin stuff takes up a lot of your time, hire additional help to delegate repetitive work to someone else. A virtual assistant can be a great way to get help without paying for employee benefits and having someone on payroll. If you don’t have enough money to hire help but you’re busy with admin work, see the point above. You’re not charging enough.

3. You Must Change What You Do

When I hear someone say “I don’t have time to blog,” what I hear is “I don’t have time to do what is necessary to make a living.” You CANNOT continue doing what you’re doing right now and expect different results. Even Einstein agrees, “Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.”

“I have no time” is an excuse to make your ego feel good about not doing the work that is necessary. The moment you do the difficult, painful act of making your ego feel uncomfortable is the moment you will do the necessary work to reach your desired outcomes. Anthony Iannarino said it well in one of his blog posts on hard work, “It’s fashionable to talk about work-life balance. It’s out of fashion to suggest that you should spend more time working. It’s been a long time since it’s been in fashion to suggest that one simply work harder, and it may never again be fashionable. But for most people, greater success would as surely follow working harder as day follows night.”

If you’re not reaching your desired outcomes, you must make sacrifices to give yourself more room to grow and do meaningful work. You must be in control of your life 100%. Having a balance between life and work is important, I’m not saying you shouldn’t have a life outside your work. But make sure you have your priorities in order. If you’re struggling to get clients, maybe that hour watching the latest episode of the Walking Dead isn’t the right way to spend your time. Instead, make a small sacrifice and write. I rarely watch TV, if there’s something I want to see I will most likely catch it on Hulu or Netflix on my lunch break.

Remember, the quality of your personal life depends on the choices you make as a business owner. You don’t have an employer, nobody will cut you off at 40 hours because they don’t want to pay you overtime. Working overtime when you’re self-employed is a benefit, not a curse. When competitors sleep, you can be working hard to reduce their market share and fill your pipeline.

Everyone is allotted 24 hours. The choices you make and priorities you set dictate the outcomes you receive.

“I have no time” is an excuse.

What you should say instead, “What are the essential things that help me reach my desired outcomes?” Then re-prioritize your to-do list.