What are you worth? How do you value yourself and your time? The answer to this question is not an easy one.
With busy schedules as a professional or even as a parent, it's likely that the valuation of your time and abilities is the last thing on your mind. Perhaps though, it should be more in the forefront of your daily priorities.
James Clear has revolved his work around inspiring others to live a better, more productive life. As an author, photographer and entrepreneur, he's pooled together his talents and passion to deliver inspiration and resources so the rest of us can develop a clearer vision for our potential and future.
When it comes the value of your life, he believes time is of the essence. Clear outlines this in his blog article, "The Value of Time: How Much is Your Time Really Worth?"
"Not all uses of time are equal, and this simple truth can make a big difference in life. People who spend their time doing more profitable work make more money. People who spend their time investing in others build better relationships. People who spend their time creating a flexible career enjoy more freedom. People who spend their time working on high-impact projects contribute more to society. Whether you want more wealth, more friendship, more freedom, or more impact, it all comes down to how you spend and value your time."
Co-hosts Matthew Nutt and Cory Dodson discuss this very topic in Episode 17 of the Momentum Marketing podcast, beginning with how we evaluate our own value as an individual.
Depending on your values and goals, how you determine your worth is going to vary. From a business perspective, there are few key areas to consider, whether you're evaluating yourself as a leader or as a member of a team.
- Job Skills
- Interpersonal Communication Skills
- Leadership Abilities
If you feel like you're lacking in any of these areas or something is keeping you from that promotion or personal goal, then the next step is to carve out time to improve in those areas. Don't think you could possibly have any spare moments in your day? Think again on how you spend your time. Maybe even record what you do over the course of a few days to really see how your time is utilized. Are you spending your lunch break scrolling through social feeds? Have you tapped into your commute time opportunity? Are you allowing distractions like texting or chats with co-workers pull you away from being focused at work?
Nick Saban, the renowned football coach at the University of Alabama, is often cited for his motivational quotes. A remark he made on goal-setting and time invested is equally quotable:
"When you invest your time, you make a goal and a decision of something that you want to accomplish. Whether it's make good grades in school, be a good athlete, be a good person, go down and do some community service and help somebody who's in need, whatever it is you choose to do, you're investing your time in that."
Another way to consider if your time is well spent is to actually apply a quantifiable number to your value. In the case of your job, look at your hourly rate. If, for example, you spend 30 minutes during lunch scrolling through your Instagram feed, is it literally worth your time to be doing so?
In another scenario, you might have a certain amount of money you'd like to be earning, say with a side project or as an entrepreneur. Should you value yourself at $30 per hour, how much time invested will take you to get to that income goal? Furthermore, if you could be earning $30 an hour, would you still choose to spend your lunch on Facebook?
One of the simplest ways to also determine if time is well spent is to look at how much you go out of your way to save money or be more efficient. Consider these common situations:
- Weekly Meetings | Are they contributing to your efficiency or preventing the team from being productive?
- Implementing New Processes | Will the new system yield information to produce more revenue or increase productivity, or will it add more work to the team and distract from P&L goals?
- Break Time | Does encouraging your team to take breaks by providing lounge areas and a break room distract them from being productive or offer them opportunities to recharge and be more committed?
- Leadership Time | Have you carved out time for being a leader for your team, or are you still stuck in the trenches, denying them of the motivational support and accountability they require?
- Running Errands | Do you consolidate your trips or pre-plan your route to reduce time on the road?
- Booking Travel Plans | Are you spending more time trying to find the cheapest airfare or hotel rate when you've already exhausted that savings in the time you were surfing the web?
- Making Your Commute | Music can get you ready for the day, but have you considered spending your 30-minute drive time listening to an audiobook, tuning into an educational podcast or even working your way through an audio language course?