How Cutting Down on Work, can Actually Make you More Money

I see it on Facebook nearly every morning. Instagram even more so. I’m sure you do too.

#hustle till I die #hustling for my dreams #grinding #burningthemidnightoil

Right now, it looks like everyone’s a born hustler.

Don’t get me wrong, I value hard work and “productive hours”, but this “hustle” craze deserves a bit of scrutiny in my opinion. 

So what is a hustler? Really

Well, Jay Z for example, is a self-proclaimed hustler, and who can disagree? He started off “slinging rocks” (his words) but grew to be a super-successful entrepreneur in multiple fields.

If you’re into entrepreneurship, this following book is a great read- check out “Empire state of mind” here on Amazon (non affiliate link)

Then of course, we have Gary Veynerchuk; The hustle guy

He took his family’s wine business from a 2 million dollar business (still great), to a 60 million dollar empire with wine library TV.

Nowadays, he runs Veyner media, charges eye watering fees to do talks on entrepreneurship and motivation, and has his dreams set on buying the New York Jets. Impressive!

Gary also writes some great material. One of my favourite books on social media marketing, is Jab, jab, jab right hook. Check it out on Amazon here. (Also a non affiliate link)

So anyway, what is hustling to us mere mortals?

Does it mean you’re a hustler if you pull 18 hour days? and does it mean that you’re lazy if you do just a few hours?

To get an accurate answer, here’s a couple of scenarios worth considering

Scenario 1.

Let’s assume that Jon and Bob, both work 14 hour days, and own their own businesses.

If Jon earns 20,000 USD a month, but Bob only earns 10,000 USD, does it mean that Bob isn’t a hustler, because he earns less?

I mean, they both worked the same amount of hours, right?

In reality, it doesn’t matter. What really matters, is who produced more moolah! 

Scenario 2.

Dave and Nathan both earn the same- 20,000 USD per month. Dave works 8 hour days, but Nathan works just 2 hours.

Even though they earned the same income, Dave works 4 times more hours than Nathan.

Dave then might call himself a hustler, but really, Nathan is far more effective with his time. This is the point I’d like to drive home here.

These Facebook and Instagram hustlers, might not be hustling as much as they think they are!

So let’s take a look at something called “Relative Wealth”.

This is a concept I personally value far above “the hustle”. Hustling for 18 hours a day, means I miss out on other important parts of my life. It’s not for me, and here’s why…

Relative Wealth 

Hours worked per month   Income per month   Earnings per Hour

40   hrs  (2 hrs a day)           20,000 USD          500 USD

160 hrs  (8 hrs a day)           20,000 USD          125 USD

So, with this in mind, you clearly want to be the guy/gal earning $500 per hour, not $125; Here’s how you can get there.

The most accurate way to calculate exactly how much you’re earning, is to use a time tracking tool.

I recommend Time Doctor; it’s free for personal use and it keeps you on track when you get distracted.

It will tell you when there is low keyboard activity, and also which sites you’ve visited.

FB, Youtube and all those distractions can be deducted from your actual hours worked so you’ll know exactly how much you’re making.

I also use Time Doctor to help manage my SEO Team.

Next, we’re going to streamline these activities to increase your actual earnings per hour.

How to Give Yourself a Pay-rise

Step 1. Draw a table

Grab a pen and paper, and draw a line down the middle to make 2 columns.

At the top of the left hand column, write “All activities”.

Now at the top of the right hand column, write “Money Making Activities

Step 2. List all the activities in your business

Write down ALL the activities carried out in your business, in the left hand column. Really think of every little thing you can. Write it all.

Step 3. Work out which activities generate you direct income.

Choose the activities in the left hand column, which have a direct and positive impact on your income. Then write these activities in the right hand column, and cross them out on the left. Eventually, you’ll have your important stuff on the right, and the general  stuff on the left. You’re goal should be to spend all your time on activities, in the right hand column ONLY.

Refining- The Process of Elimination and Delegation

Starting from the top of the left hand column you just finished, use the chart below (taken from the 4 hour work week) to dig even deeper and work out whether you should completely eliminate an activity, or delegate it to someone competent. (I first saw this diagram in the 4 hour work week– a must read)


Note: don’t worry about the cost of delegating work to other people just yet. That will be covered by the increase in your earnings per hour.

So by now, you should start seeing where time is being wasted, and where you can streamline parts of your business and daily activities. 

I’m still a student of these processes myself, but as I develop my skills each year, I find my hourly earnings increasing, and my hours actually dropping.

This has given me more time to develop myself, which I feel is the most important benefit of streamlining your business activities.

This brings me to my final point.

Why Spare Time Makes You More Money

Something I read recently, drives this point home perfectly. It basically reads like this;

“Your level of success will rarely exceed your level of personal development, because success is something you attract by the person you become”

Pretty insightful stuff!

Basically, your level of success can only parallel your level of personal development… And of course, to develop yourself on a personal level, you need time. 

So as you develop yourself during your new-found time, your income will increase. That means, you can afford to hire more people. That is exactly what I have done.

Eventually, you’ll be spending more of your time on personal development, and less on daily tasks; your team will be handling that for you. 

And best of all, you’ll be happier, because you’re progressing. We humans need progress to feel happy! It’s just in our nature.

So next time you see someone on Facebook or Instagram #hustling or #grinding for 18 hours and posting their hourly achievements, you might want to ask yourself if they are really maximising their hourly earnings or just working a lot.

In fact, you can send them a link to this article if you like.

So thanks for reading.

Let me know your thoughts on the hustle and effective time management below. Maybe you have some tools or apps to help? I’d love to hear from you!

{ 2 comments… add one }
  • Alan Leenhouts July 14, 2016, 5:02 am

    Nice post, Managing my time is one of my biggest struggles. I seem to be on the computer or returning an email all the time. It’s partly because I’m always trying different things also. There are tons of things I’m good at but I like to try to be a pro at ever aspect of IM. It really isn’t necessary I know and probably killing my per hour earnings. I am gonna print your flow chart and put it over my desk to remind me.

    • BarryP BarryP July 14, 2016, 5:31 am

      Hey Alan. Time management really is tough, so I completely relate to your problems. I found that the most valuable thing I’ve discovered lately, is building a great team. Once you have even 1 super-star on the team, it transforms everything!

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