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Why Time is Your Most Valuable Asset

Time sneaks into every decision we make.

What will you eat for dinner?

What job will you look for next?

What’s the next business idea you’ll work on?

👉 Time.

Whether it’s about career advancement, personal development, or simply choosing what to eat, time is the silent factor influencing our choices.

We often find ourselves chasing dreams with the hope that with just a bit more time, we could achieve them faster and more efficiently.

Mastery Takes Time

Consider any skill you’ve wanted to master, from professional qualifications (e.g. CMA, CPA, MBA) to hobbies like jiu-jitsu (from white to black belt takes 10 years on average).

The journey to expertise is a marathon, not a sprint.

There are no shortcuts to experience.

It’s all about putting in the hours, the practice, and, yes, making the most of the time you have.

Because tomorrow is never guaranteed.

Building a business requires a time investment

Launching and nurturing a business is a prime example of time’s impact.

From acquiring sales and marketing knowledge to understanding operations, every step requires a significant time investment.

Unless you’ve had prior experience, most of us have to learn from the ground up.

My entire career was in Corporate Finance (longer story here).

And while I learned how the numbers worked in growing revenues, I didn’t know how to capture revenues.

Kind of a big deal in business.

Ultimately, it’s about dedicating the hours to learn, fail, and eventually succeed.

And only time allows for that.

Time in Decision-Making

Every choice, from the mundane (like what to eat for breakfast) to the critical (getting married and having kids), involves time.

Purchasing decisions, for example, aren’t just about what we buy but also the time spent considering our options.

“Is this healthier than this? What about that? And what about this I found on Amazon?”

Decisions take time.

Consider what’s important to you to allocate that time towards.

Time is the Ultimate Asset

Why does time matter?

Because it’s finite.

Once that hour passes, it’s gone.

Forever.

Here’s a simple graphic depicting our age and lifecycle:

We’re constantly reminded to be mindful of how we spend our time, focusing on activities that bring us joy and fulfillment.

Recognizing time as our most valuable asset is the first step towards living a life aligned with our true priorities.

Family, friends, you name it.

Conclusion: Time, The Foundation of Fulfillment

Time shapes our existence, from the personal ambitions we chase to the professional goals we set.

Embracing time as a precious commodity means making conscious choices about how we spend it, who we spend it with, and what we spend it on.

Technology, mentorship, and self-investment can be powerful tools in making the most out of our limited time.

Reflect on your relationship with time and how it influences your life’s trajectory.

Remember, time is the one asset you can’t afford to waste.

Cheers 👊

5 Lessons Learned Growing a Six-Figure Service Business

5 years ago, I quit my Finance job and launched, grew, and scaled a six-figure service business.

In the process, I learned a lot about what it takes to start and grow a business.

TLDR: It’s super hard!

And along the way were tons of learnings, mistakes, failures, and wins.

If you’re reading this today, my hope is you will learn from my mistakes.

Let’s go.

Lesson 1: Level up your skills

The first, and arguably most important, lesson I learned was leveling up.

At that point, I had over a decade of experience in Finance, Accounting, and Strategy.

While it was nice to know the ins and outs of numbers and how they translate to sales and profits, the truth was this…

Those skills didn’t teach me how to sell and market.

The 2 skills you actually need to start and grow a business.

So every day, I dedicated myself to learning just a little bit about sales and marketing.

That habit became (and is still today) a huge driving force in scaling my business to 6 figures in under one year.

Everything I learned and consumed, I put into action immediately.

It was a very similar process to Wrestling and BJJ – learn a technique, and then apply them during sparring.

I started seeing results immediately.

And all those years of tracking, creating, and presenting metrics started to make sense.

So my lesson here is simple:

Every day, carve out time to level up.

Whether reading for a few minutes or listening to a podcast relevant to your business, invest the time to level up.

You will be extremely grateful for doing so.

And you’ll also reduce many mistakes along the way.

Invest the time to level up now and experience growth as a result over time.

Lesson 2: Track your metrics

As mentioned earlier, my career was in Finance.

I had the privilege of working at Fortune 100 companies, billion-dollar hypergrowth companies, and down to startups and small businesses.

What made these companies so successful was their relentless focus on the metrics and KPIs.

  • CEO: Our target is $1M.
  • CFO: Okay, we’re targeting $1M and here is how.

I was fortunate that I worked directly for the C-suite and had hands-on experience seeing what it took to take companies to the next level.

They knew their numbers inside out.

They challenged the numbers.

They benchmarked those numbers.

And most importantly, they were relentless in holding their teams accountable to those numbers.

If you’re starting a business or in the process of growing and scaling, measure your metrics.

Create a simple performance tracker with key metrics that drive your business.

Then create a plan on how you will hit those numbers.

And finally, measure and track those numbers on a set cadence (e.g. monthly).

Be relentless, track the numbers, and adjust and pivot when necessary.

Lesson 3: Find like-minded groups and people

Starting out, I tried to do everything by myself.

I thought I would find the answers in time.

But the truth was this, you don’t know what you don’t know.

I made a ton of mistakes as a result.

From stupid sales call blunders to not setting up basic systems that cost me money.

I realized quickly I was never going to grow at the pace I was on.

I had to admit I needed help.

It was then that I started networking, finding like-minded groups and masterminds, and finding the right people who could help and I could help them.

This resulted in not only making fewer mistakes but also resulted in making wonderful connections and even sales.

Everybody needs help.

The sooner you start reaching out for it, the faster you’ll notice growth in your business.

Lesson 4: Build systems and processes

Ever since I can recall, I’ve always wanted to do things quicker and easier.

It made me happy knowing I could create something that I built once and would continuously work on thereafter.

When I worked in Finance, I hated that certain processes took so long or had too many steps.

It didn’t make sense to me.

So I would rebuild the process, add my flair, and ensure this new process achieved the following:

  1. Faster to produce
  2. More accurate
  3. Enabled others to plug in quickly

This mindset was tremendously helpful when growing and scaling my business.

Immediately, I set up sales systems to capture and nurture leads, automate repetitive tasks, and scale marketing activities.

If you’re just starting or growing, think about your systems.

  • What makes your business tick?
  • What activities could be automated away vs. needing to hire resources?
  • What is something that’s causing a bottleneck in your business?

I suggest using a mind map tool to think through this.

The answers will become clear.

Build systems and processes to scale and grow your business.

Lesson 5: Continuously learn and adapt

Here’s the thing.

Every business is different.

Every business is unique.

What worked for one business may not work for yours or mine.

Stay curious and always ask “why”.

Don’t wait to fix things when they’re too late.

Actively optimize and improve your business.

Undoubtedly, something will need to be fixed at some point.

Keep reading and learning.

Books, podcasts, blogs, you name it.

There is always something to learn.

And when you do learn, apply as well.

Just like in sports, you learn best when things are applied.

Business is no different.

Conclusion

Starting a business is hard.

Scaling a business is hard.

Staying motivated is hard.

But having systems in place, staying hungry, being adaptable, and staying persistent will go a long way.

I hope these 5 lessons help you in your business journey. 👊

Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed

Tomorrow may never come.

Tomorrow may not show up.

Tomorrow is a long time.

Realizing that tomorrow isn’t guaranteed changes perspective.

Our perspective.

My perspective.

So live your best life now.

Take on new challenges.

Fight for what you believe in.

Do what you believe is right.

Stand up for what you believe is right.

Be authentic.

Be genuine.

Be curious.

Be hungry.

Tomorrow isn’t guaranteed.

So live a life so big you won’t regret it.

And then you can look back with a smile.

How to think using mind maps

When I graduated college, I did what everyone else did.

Get a job, go to work daily, come home, eat, rinse, and repeat.

However, after I was laid off for the second time, I realized I needed to change.

So I quit my job, turned down offers including Amazon, and went backpacking.

It was during this period of my life I learned about mind maps.

TLDR: Mind maps are life-changing. They will force you to think deep.

What I learned from mind maps wasn’t about pretty visuals or a wall of text.

No.

It was about how to think.

Sounds silly, right?

And you’re probably thinking to yourself now, “But I already know how to think.”

I thought so too.

That all changed when I discovered that real thinking manifests when we sit down and think.

Truly think about the thing we’re doing.

Let’s use an example:

What do I do with my life?

Reasonable question.

Let me ask, how did you answer it?

Did you have an answer?

If yes, great!

If no, no worries. (This question is HARD for anyone.)

Now let’s try answering using the mind map framework.

Okay, we got some clarity now.

We’ve broken it down into short-term (less than 1 year) and long-term (more than 1 year) timelines.

Let’s go deeper.

Awesome! Now we’ve isolated our thinking to “Goals” and by category (Personal vs. Professional).

Let’s go one level deeper.

Now that’s specific. 👊

By doing this exercise, you’re clearly articulating what you want, when you want it, with whom you want to do it, etc.

Your thinking has gone 3 levels deep vs. the 1 level we had initially.

How’s that for deep thinking?

Let’s try one more exercise that I love doing and do every week.

A mind map for our life as a whole.

Doing this mind map exercise will unveil so much about yourself.

  • Likes
  • Dislikes
  • Passions
  • Interests
  • Goals
  • Ambitions

The list goes on.

A mind map is ultimately a way of thinking.

A way of being able to consolidate your brain in one place to make sense of this crazy thing called life.

Now go give it a try.

Map out your life, goals, ambitions, and so on.

And when you’re done, let me know how it went!

Would love to hear about it.

Chat soon! 👊

Be in the moment

This very second.

This very moment.

See how fast it passed?

You won’t ever get that second back.

Fast forward.

Years have passed.

Dreams have slipped by.

You wake up, begrudgingly.

You’re tired.

But wait.

Take a second.

Close your eyes.

Breathe in the brisk air.

You feel that?

That calm, relaxing feeling.

That moment.

You pause.

Life stops.

For just a second.

Take in the moment.

Be in the moment.

Enjoy it.

Life is crazy.

Life is mad.

But stay in the moment.

Embrace it.

Be in the moment.

The Power of Conviction in the Face of Doubt

Doubt can be a powerful force that can challenge even the strongest of convictions.

It can make us question our beliefs and cause us to second-guess ourselves.

However, having conviction in the face of doubt is a key ingredient for success in all aspects of life.

Whether it’s in our personal lives or our careers, maintaining a strong conviction in the face of doubt can help us achieve our goals and live a fulfilling life.

Stick to your ideals, your beliefs, and your values.

Stand up for what you believe in.

Have conviction, even in the face of doubt.

Ultimately, stay true to yourself.

The passion for learning

I’ve always been a curious person growing up.

When I was little, I would stare up at the stars and wonder what those things were.

“How do I get there? Can I touch it? How far away are those stars?”

My mind was filled with imagination.

I wanted to learn how this life worked.

Going through high school and college

In my high school days, I was learning but honestly, it was mostly memorization.

I was struggling with home life, so I barely had time to think about school.

I did enough to study, get decent grades, and apply to college.

However, the real learning began in college.

In fact, I had no choice.

It was do or die for me at that period in time.

I had just lost my father, and I had no other family.

In my mind, I HAD to get a job. I HAD to make money.

I HAD to survive at all costs.

And the only way I could achieve that was by studying.

More importantly, learning everything.

So for the next 4 years, I studied feverishly. All day, every day, while at work, eating dinner, hanging with friends.

In my mind, I had ZERO doubt that was what I NEEDED to do.

I worked multiple jobs, studied all day, dreamed about how I would be successful.

I thought about how things would get easier.

I visualized it every day.

How I developed a passion for learning

Learning is a process.

Learning is a habit.

Learning is dedication.

Learning is a way of thinking.

I understood immediately that the only way I was going to survive was to level up.

I NEEDED to be smarter. I NEEDED more knowledge. I NEEDED to understand what was happening.

This, in turn, changed everything.

I started loving studying because I was learning how things worked.

From science to finance to greek mythology, I enjoyed it. Some classes less so of course 😅

But overall, I learned to enjoy the process.

I was able to make SENSE of what I was learning.

I also found that I LOVED helping and teaching others, which I still do to this day.

When you find a way to be curious and wonder how things became the way they are, that’s where true learning emerges.

You begin to enjoy the fine details.

Steve Jobs was like this.

Questions to think about to build your learning passion

The truth is we all live busy lives, so taking the time to learn can be challenging. However, it can achieved.

Start with one fundamental question, “Do I want to learn?”

We can’t begin to learn anything if we don’t have the desire to.

So ask these questions and see how you feel:

  • Do I want to learn that new skill?
  • Do I want to learn about that new job?
  • Do I want to try out that new sport?
  • Do I want to be better?

Having a desire is the first step towards the path of learning.

Enjoy the journey and process

Like everything in life, learning is a process. It’s a journey.

Learn to love it.

Learn to love every minute of it.

Things take time.

But when you do achieve something new as a result of spending time to learn, you feel amazing.

To this day, I learn everything.

I keep an open-mind to all perspectives.

I love hearing what people have to say, whether I agree or not.

So there you have it.

Keep learning, keep growing, and most importantly, have fun.

Life’s short, kick ass, and spend it with people you love.

Enjoy!

Curiosity is an unfair advantage.

Curiosity is an unfair advantage.

Curiosity will encourage you to take bold actions, start new projects, and force you out of your comfort zone.

Go back to the last time you truly asked questions about life, your career, your relationships, etc.

At some point, we lost our curiosity of the world.

Be bold, be fearless, embrace life.

Be curious.

Be daring and live the life you want and desire.

No one – and I mean no one – can say otherwise.

Be curious, stay curious.

Be 100% authentic with your true self

The only way to live a full, true, happy life is to be 100%, fully authentic to your true self.

What does that mean?

It means being yourself even when no one is around to watch you.

Life is short.

Time is valuable.

Spend it graciously and abundantly with people you care about.

Protect your time.

Be authentic.

Be yourself.

5 Best Subreddits To Learn From

If you love learning, consider Reddit.

There’s so much information out there that it can be difficult to decide where to look.

I believe the best place to learn and grow is on Reddit. Yes, there’s controversy. Yes, it’s not always accurate.

But when it comes to learning stories and gaining perspectives, you won’t find a better place than Reddit.

Here are my 5 best subreddits I love going to every day to learn and grow.

Let’s dive in.

1: r/AskReddit

The r/askreddit subreddit is the place to ask and answer thought-provoking questions.

You’ll get a mixture of topics ranging from serious down to comedy.

Example: “People who haven’t pooped in 2019 yet, why are you still holding on to last year’s sh*t?”

If you love learning and gaining insights from people all over the world, r/AskReddit is the place to go.

2: r/SmallBusiness

The r/smallbusiness subreddit is great for those who own a small business.

As a business owner, there is too much to learn and it helps to go to a community that provides guidance and help.

I’ve found this subreddit in particular very helpful, with topics ranging from sales and marketing down to how to manage taxes and LLC formation.

If you have a small business or planning to start one, consider this r/SmallBusiness.

3: r/PersonalFinance

The r/personalfinance subreddit is great for those who need to boost their personal finance knowledge.

When I started my career, I struggled to understand 401ks, Roth IRAs, and other best money-saving tips.

So when I found this subreddit, I immediately found a sense of relief.

This subreddit also jumpstarted my FIRE (Financial Independence / Retire Early) mindset (more below).

If you struggle with money or just need a community to learn best practices, consider r/PersonalFinance.

4: r/FinancialIndependence

The r/financialindependence (FIRE) subreddit is great for those who are serious or are considering living life on their own terms.

What do I mean?

When I found this subreddit back in 2016, I was struggling with why I felt apathy toward my job and career.

I realized it was because I could be working for the REST of my life…

So I set out to understand what I needed to do to stop that from happening.

More importantly, to live life on my own terms and not be tied to a corporate job forever.

I came across this subreddit, and it forever changed my perspectives. I was taught early on that you graduate from college, enter the workforce, build a “career”, and that’s that.

Never did I ask myself, “How much do I REALLY need to live? What is that number I need to achieve to NEVER be tied to another job ever again?”

Through FIRE, I learned that number (it was MUCH small than I thought).

I also learned how to make money in different ways, how to cut unnecessary expenses, how to negotiate for things like salary and expenses, and so on.

If you’re on a similar path to financial independence and freedom, consider r/FinancialIndependence.

5: r/Space

The r/space subreddit is a subreddit dedicated to all things space.

From astronomy to space exploration, this subreddit has everything you need to learn about space.

Whether you are a beginner looking to learn more about the universe, an experienced space enthusiast, or someone that’s curious about those bright shiny objects out in the sky, this subreddit is the perfect place for you.

Ever since I watched Interstellar, I couldn’t stop thinking about the stars, galaxies, black holes, and the cosmos.

If you’re curious too, I highly recommend r/space.

P.s. I am STOKED for the James Webb telescope! You can follow along here.

What are your favorites?

Learning and growing are tough when there is so much information out there.

But I believe the cornerstone to learning comes best when it’s with a community.

That’s where Reddit fits in.

What are your thoughts?

What are your favorite subreddits?

Let me know!

Book Review: “Delivering Happiness” by Tony Hsieh

It was about building a lifestyle that was about delivering happiness to everyone, including ourselves. (it’s not all about money)

Tony Hsieh, CEO of Zappos

A business can be more than just about money.

It can be about making customers, stakeholders, employees, and families happy.

Delivering Happiness by Tony Hsieh shares the insights and learnings he developed during his tenure as CEO at Zappos.

Let’s dive in.

What it’s all about

Delivering Happiness shares the insights and learnings Tony developed during his time at Zappos and with the sale of his first startup.

Despite selling his first startup, he noticed something about the culture:

We knew the outside world probably thought we were jumping up and down and doing cartwheels, but instead our mood was a strange mix of apathy and relief. The excitement of LinkExchange had disappeared long ago.

Knowing this, he set out to create a culture at Zappos that focused on making employees, teams, and customers happy.

For example, whereas every business at the time hid its phone number, Zappos displayed it right on its homepage.

Over the years, the number one driver of our growth at Zappos has been repeat customers and word of mouth.

Short story, Zappos did incredibly well.

They eventually sold to Amazon with Tony continuing to manage the business.

The key message

Businesses can be fun and still serve their purpose of helping people.

Focus on an amazing culture.

Focus on making customers love your business.

And as always, do what’s best for the customer (forget KPIs).

Why I loved it

I share a lot of the same feelings Tony has about business.

My near-decade in Corporate Finance showed me culture is a problem for many businesses, small and large.

Additionally, I’ve seen many businesses not do what’s in the best interests of their customers.

This book will remind you why having a great culture, focusing on customers, and, overall, making people happy matters.

Why you should read it

I believe all founders and company executives should read this book.

It’s a great reminder that businesses thrive when people are happy.

It’s also a reminder that businesses ALWAYS start at the top.

No amount of MBA and studying can teach you that people are people.

Customers, stakeholders, employees, executives.

Focus on happiness.

You can buy the book here.

Memorable quotes

Over the years, the number one driver of our growth at Zappos has been repeat customers and word of mouth.

We also offer a 365-day return policy for people who have trouble committing or making up their minds.

We believe that customer service shouldn’t be just a department, it should be the entire company.

To WOW, you must differentiate yourself, which means do something a little unconventional and innovative.

We must all learn not only to not fear change, but to embrace it enthusiastically and, perhaps even more important, encourage and drive it.

They told me they really enjoyed the personal stories, and they said that, even though many of them had already read about Zappos in the press, it made a huge difference to actually hear it come from me. They told me they could really feel my passion for company culture, customer service, and Zappos in general.

In the end, it turns out that we’re all taking different paths in pursuit of the same goal: happiness.

I believe that there’s something interesting about anyone and everyone—you just have to figure out what that something is. If anything, I’ve found that it’s more interesting to build relationships with people that are not in the business world because they almost always can offer unique perspectives and insights, and also because those relationships tend to be more genuine.

Your thoughts?

Have you read Delivering Happiness?

How did you feel about the book?

Any interesting takeaways?

Let me know!

5 Best Productivity Tips For Solopreneurs

silver macbook on brown wooden table

As a solo entrepreneur aka solopreneur, it’s important to stay productive and focused.

I ran 2 businesses and a handful of side hustles as a solopreneur, and some days were unbearable.

Being a solo founder can be really tough.

You’re constantly fighting against the odds, and you’re always on your own. It’s a lonely job, and it can be really hard to stay motivated. But there are ways to make it easier.

These are my 5 best productivity tips for solopreneurs.

Let’s dive in.

Tip 1: Set Goals and Milestones

Setting goals and milestones can help you stay on track and achieve your objectives.

By having specific targets in mind, you can stay motivated and focused, making it easier to reach your goals.

Depending on your business, some goals could include:

  1. Evaluate your current marketing efforts and determine where you could improve.
  2. Develop a plan to increase traffic to your website.
  3. Create a budget and allocate resources to marketing and advertising campaigns that will help you reach your target audience.
  4. Streamline operations by picking the right software for your business (e.g. Zapier to automate processes)
  5. Grow sales to $X by running cold campaigns

Setting small goals that you can easily accomplish is often more effective than setting lofty goals that are too difficult to achieve.

So start small and work your way up.

And be sure to celebrate each milestone along the way!

Tip 2: Get Enough Sleep

A lack of sleep can have a negative impact on your productivity.

Remember those late nights and the feeling you have when you wake up, feeling drowsy and out of sorts?

Yup, that kind.

According to the National Sleep Foundation, adults need at least 7 to 9 hours of sleep each night to be productive.

If you’re struggling to get enough sleep, there are some simple tips you can follow to help improve your productivity.

  1. Make a list of what you need to get done the next day and try to stick to it as much as possible.
  2. Establish a bedtime routine that helps you wind down before sleep. This could include reading or listening to calming music.
  3. Avoid watching television or using the computer in bed, as they can keep you from drifting off.
  4. Try to get up at the same time every day, even on weekends, so that your body gets a consistent rhythm of rest and relaxation.
  5. Get enough exercise. Exercise has been shown to improve your overall mood and energy levels, which can help you get more restful sleep.

Whatever tip you choose, stick with it and try your best to get much-needed rest.

Tip 3: Organize Your Time Wisely

When starting out as a solopreneur, it can be difficult to manage your time wisely.

Juggling work, family, and social obligations can feel overwhelming and lead to less productivity.

Here are three tips for organizing your time wisely:

Set boundaries.

Establish specific times during the day when you will be working and other times when you will be free.

This way, you know when to allocate your time and energy accordingly.

Break down large tasks into manageable pieces.

When faced with a large task that needs to be completed, break it down into smaller tasks that can be completed in short order.

This will help reduce the stress of trying to complete a large project on deadline.

I recommend ClickUp to manage this.

You can also refer to my post on how to set up ClickUp here if you’re brand new to the tool.

Take a break.

When you feel overwhelmed or stressed, take a break to relax and recharge your batteries.

This will help you return to work with renewed vigor and focus.

I personally like to step outside, close my eyes, and take a deep breath.

Tip 4: Use Technology to Your Advantage

Technology can be a great asset for solopreneurs.

By using technology, you can save tons of time and increase productivity.

For example, you can use software to keep track of your deadlines, manage workloads, or market your business.

Here are some example tools you can use to be productive:

1: Google Calendar

Google Calendar is a free online tool that lets you manage your work and personal schedules.

You can add events, set reminders, and add notes to events. This way, you can keep track of all the important dates and details related to your work.

I love color-coding my calendar based on:

  • Activity type (meeting vs. focus time)
  • Category (business vs. personal)
  • Reminders

Whatever process you use, I recommend sticking to it and readjusting every month to see if it still suits you.

2: Notion

Notion is a software app designed to help individuals and teams manage their work and stay organized.

It’s perfect for businesses or organizations that want to be more efficient and productive.

With Notion, you can create custom pages, notes, agendas, wikis, processes, goals, and so much more.

I love using Notion to manage as my second brain and for my business.

3: Google Drive

Google Drive is a great way to keep your work and projects organized.

It offers a simple interface that makes it easy to share files with others, and it can automatically keep track of changes so you don’t have to.

And if you have a Google Workspace account, it’s only normal to use Google Drive as it’s part of your subscription.

I love Google Drive and use it to manage everything.

4: ClickUp

ClickUp is a project management tool that helps people and teams manage their work and personal life.

You can use ClickUp for a variety of things:

  • Manage personal to-dos
  • Manage business tasks
  • Create CRM to manage sales lead
  • Manage growth marketing experiments
  • Create goals
  • Create project timelines using the Gantt function

There’s so much you can do with ClickUp.

I’ve been personally using it back when it was version 1.0 and still love it to this day.

5: Microsoft Office 365

As much as I love Google Drive, Microsoft is still king when it comes to spreadsheets.

Microsoft Office 365 is cloud-based, and you can access all the features of Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint.

My recommendation is to leverage the built-in features such as macros, voice-to-text, and keyboard shortcuts to be more productive.

Tip 5: Delegate Tasks When Necessary

When starting out as a solopreneur, it can be hard to know when to delegate tasks.

Delegating can help you focus on your core strengths and business goals while freeing up time to do other things that are important to you.

Here are five tips for delegating tasks effectively:

1. Define the task clearly.

Make sure everyone understands what is required of them and what the expected outcome is. This will help avoid confusion or frustration down the line.

2. Set deadlines.

If a task is not completed by the deadline, it should be assigned to someone who can meet that deadline more easily. This will help you stay organized and keep your team on track.

3. Be clear about expectations

Set clear expectations for team members, and be willing to hold them accountable. This will help everyone stay focused and motivated.

4. Give feedback.

Be sure to give feedback on a regular basis so that team members know how they are performing. This will help them improve their skills and work towards meeting your expectations.

5. Set up systems and procedures.

If you want your team to be effective, it is important to set up systems and procedures that guide their work. This way, everything is organized and everyone knows what to do in order to meet the goals of the project

Be more productive today

As a solo entrepreneur / solopreneur, it’s important to stay productive and focused.

It’s easy to lose sight of the big picture when working alone, but following these five tips will help you stay on track and meet your goals.

What are your thoughts?

Do you have any tips that have helped you become more productive as a solopreneur?

Let me know!

5 Best Practices To Save Money Today

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Saving money has always been important to me.

Growing up, we didn’t have money.

I was forced to learn how to save money at a young age, and along the way, I’ve learned a few tricks and tips.

And with Covid-19 still in effect, increasing inflation, and the likelihood of no further stimulus checks, we’re all looking for more ways to save money today.

In this post, I’ll share with you five best practices on how to save money today.

Let’s dive in.

1: Cut Back on Expenses

When it comes to saving money, one of the best things you can do is to cut back on your expenses.

But first, it’s important to note that cutting expenses doesn’t mean living a less-than-average lifestyle.

You can still enjoy life while cutting back.

As Ramit Sethi points out, focus on cutting back on your top 3 cost buckets.

In my finance days, 80% of costs came down to 20% of your categories (Pareto principle).

For most of us, these costs include:

  1. Rent
  2. Dining out
  3. Personal expenses (clothing, toys, etc.)

To cut back on expenses in these areas, determine the following:

Rent

Rent is easily at the top of the highest cost buckets for most.

So reducing this cost can make a significant impact on your savings.

Ask these questions:

  • Can I find a cheaper place to rent?
  • Can I room with a roommate?
  • Can I sublease?
  • Can I move to a lower cost of living (LCOL) area?

One way to start seeing potential is to plug numbers into your spreadsheet.

Play with scenarios, e.g. “If my rent was $500/mo vs. $1000/mo, what would that look like? Where would I live in that range?”

You’ll quickly start to get some great ideas on how to lower your rent costs.

Dining out

When it comes to dining out, many people tend to overlook the fact that it can be one of the hardest areas to cut back on.

In fact, the average American pays $232 a month for commercially prepared meals and eats out four to five times a week.

Take $232, multiply by 12, and you get a staggering $2,784 spent eating out.

Personally, I’ve spent upwards of $5k on eating out….

That’s savings that could have gone towards investments.

You learn 🤷‍♀️

Questions to think about when cutting back on dining and eating out costs:

  • Can I cook at home more often, perhaps using things like the Instant Pot?
  • Can I replace full meals with appetizers?
  • Can I set a budget goal to eat out at specific frequencies?
  • Can I dine out only when I hang out with friends?

Be gentle when cutting back.

It’s hard to slash away dining costs, so strongly consider which areas you’re okay cutting back on. E.g. eating out 1x per week vs. 5.

Personal expenses

The next category that eats a big chunk into savings is personal expenses.

Personal expenses, also known as discretionary spending, include:

  • Entertainment
  • Travel
  • Clothing
  • Toys
  • Electronics
  • Gadgets
  • Movies

To reiterate, there is NOTHING wrong with spending on yourself.

The key, though, is to focus on your budget and what you’ve allocated yourself to spend.

For example, let’s say you allocate $100 dollars every month to spend on yourself. That’s $1200 per year to spend on yourself.

And if you save more than you spent, you can also consider rolling that amount over to next month.

Here are some questions to ask yourself when thinking about cutting back on personal expenses:

  • How much can I reduce my monthly expenses by cutting back on personal expenses?
  • Can I make better use of the personal things I’ve already purchased?
  • How much have I spent year-to-date? Why?
  • If I increase my budget, how does it impact my overall savings?

Too often, we feel trapped by our budgets. To me, that’s not a real budget.

A budget is flexible and is meant to work for you.

So long as you set a budget for yourself and stick to it, spend away!

2: Find Deals Online

One way to save money is to find deals online.

There are a number of websites that offer discounts on products and services.

You can also use apps like Honey that automatically find you great deals. I love this app because it searches for coupons for you and then automatically applies them to your basket.

How easy is that?

If you’re an entrepreneur, it can be tough to spend on monthly software subscriptions.

Instead, consider lifetime deals.

You can buy lifetime software deals at sites like Appsumo, Pitchground, and SaaSMantra where you pay once and get the product for life.

This is a great way to save money for your business.

3: Use Cashback Rewards Programs

Cashback rewards programs are a great way to save money on your purchases.

By using these programs, you can earn cashback on your purchases every time you make a purchase.

Some of the best credit cards for earning cashback include:

  • Chase Freedom
  • Chase Sapphire Preferred
  • American Express Blue Cash Preferred

Depending on the card, these cashback rewards can add up quickly.

Always remember to pay off your credit card monthly bill statement in full, so that you don’t owe any interest or debt.

4: Save Money Today Using Coupons

 

Coupons can be a great way to save money when shopping.

I personally have used both physical and digital coupons.

Hey, a deal’s a deal!

One app that I love using to find digital coupons and deals is Honey.

Honey is a free app that helps you find amazing deals and coupons for you automatically.

For example, when you’re ready to purchase an Appsumo software tool, just hit the Honey chrome extension and will show whether or not it found a deal. See my screen below:

Leverage coupons to your advantage to start saving money today.

5: Make a Budget and Stick to It!

Making a budget is one of the best ways to save money.

When you have a budget, you know exactly how much money you have available each month and what you can spend it on. You can also track your progress over time and see how much money you’ve saved.

What I love to do with my budget is to make it visual.

That means creating graphs and charts to showcase your financial progress.

An app I recommend trying out is YNAB (You Need A Budget).

It can be relieving to see your savings accumulate, which means more money for investments, projects, and more.

Here are some tips for making a budget, all of which can be in YNAB:

  • List your income sources (W2 job, side hustles, businesses, crypto)
  • Then list your monthly expenses. Include things like rent, utilities, groceries, transportation, and other bills.
  • Review your net savings percentage (income less expenses divided by expenses). Higher the percentage, the better (I like to aim for +30%)
  • With your budget in place, now figure out how much money you need to live comfortably

Making a budget is a powerful activity.

I’ve had my budget since 2009 and review monthly.

It’s a great reminder of why I save in the first – freedom, flexibility, comfort.

Plus, a budget helps you see things differently. Ask yourself, could I make more money via a side hustle?

Hmm….

Save Money Today

Saving money can be tough.

It’s not always easy saving and knowing that you’re also foregoing that fancy trip, car, or big-ticket item.

However, I would argue that it’s worth it.

Not having to work for another corporate?

Sign me up!

I hope this blog post about the 5 Best Practices to save money today helped you.

Embrace the Savings!

My mentee passed away

The news came as a shock.

It happened one week ago.

I learned of the news from a former colleague who pinged me via LinkedIn.

My mentee was only 29 years old.

I still have vivid memories of when we worked together.

He had joined fresh out of college.

His manager left one week into his newfound finance career.

In a short 6 weeks, he was already on the chopping block.

I mean, how the hell can you expect some kid to learn a job and get up and running without any support or training.

The next part I will always remember.

I booked time for us to sit down and train together.

He broke down and cried.

He said, “Yarty, I think I’m going to get fired.”

It made me incredibly sad to hear this.

So I took it upon myself to train him.

And that’s what I did.

I also did it because I knew about his past.

He had also lost direct family members.

It’s extremely difficult to perform under those circumstances.

Why do I know this?

Because I went through it.

Depression’s a bitch.

To anyone who may be suffering, my heart is with you.

This battle is the most difficult battle of our lives.

We will fight it together.

To my friend and mentee — I hope you’re in a better place.

You will be forever missed.

From family to friends to colleagues, we will miss you.

RIP bud.

Please wake up

man sitting on the mountain edge

“Please wake up.”

There I was, in the first grade, witnessing my own mother trying to end her life.

I was so young I didn’t quite know what was happening, but I did know that she wasn’t breathing.

It was the four of us, and we were crying our eyes out hoping she would wake up.

“Please wake up,” I said as tears fell down my cheeks.

Please wake up.

We were just kids.

Experiencing these kinds of moments at such a young age is hard.

Normally, kids and families shower each other with love and affection, have family picnics with friends and relatives, enjoy their childhood, and not have to face the harsh realities of death, sadness, depression, and loneliness at a young age.

My mother faced many demons, many of which I didn’t know about till much later.

While growing up, we lived through an extremely difficult childhood as my father would constantly scream and shout at us while our mother would guzzle her favorite alcoholic beverage every night.

And after that, my dad would go on to scream at our mother, which then our mother would scream right back at us. It was a vicious cycle.

Every day felt like misery.

There were so many memories of me crying in my bed, praying I wouldn’t be screamed at again. My siblings went through the exact emotions – we were in constant fear.

You never forget.

Those memories will forever remain

As I’ve gotten older, those memories have never disappeared.

Sometimes, those memories motivate me to do more and persevere. Other times, those memories drag me down. I’m human.

My mother ended up suddenly passing away 18 years ago while I was still in high school.

I was right beside her to witness her breathe her final breath. Down to the last hour and last minute.

It was painful.

You’re not alone

For those who have experienced something similar, just know that I empathize with you.

Although you may not hear it every day, you’re loved and cared for. This world can be very misunderstanding, but know that there are many, many others out there just like you.

You’re not alone.

You will persevere.

You will get through this.

Have you experienced something similar in your life?

Let me know by leaving a comment or messaging me.

Embrace the grind.