May 16, 2013 | Posted in: Leading Hartfully, Living Hartfully

If we are wasting time, we are wasting our lives. We trade out our energy for time and our life is made up of time. So when we waste our energy, we waste our time, and we waste our lives. What are you doing with your time? What are you doing with your life?

What I’ve found in my years of consulting, working with leaders of organizations, entrepreneurs, solo-preneurs and from self-study is that leaders are learners and those that learn more, earn more. What I believe to be true from my experience is that when you’re done learning. . . . you’re done. I view life-long learning as something to look forward to in the quest for continuous improvement.

Some studies suggest the average American watches 6 hours of TV per day, making the average 60 year old an avid TV viewer of 15 years of his life, a quarter of a lifetime vegging on the couch! So what if we all eliminated 1 hour of TV per day = 365 hours per year, which equals 2 months of additional time. That equates to 9 average 40-hour work-weeks to do what is more important in your life than click away in front of a screen.  And many of us wish we had more time to do the things we like to do. May I suggest re-organizing your time?

My experience has also shown that leaders are readers. If we read just 1 substantive book per week, that’s 520 books in 10 years and if those books are in an area of interest where you make your livelihood, that would make you an expert in your field, and experts are in demand. If you’re reading the gossip publications all week. . . that’s another story altogether.

What about the time spent in your car commuting? The average American commutes 30 minutes each way from work which equals 1250 hours in your car in 5 years. That’s enough time spent in your car for a college education. Are you listening to schlock or are you learning a language or something useful to society or your family or yourself? How are you choosing to spend your time and spend your life?

What about delegating the tasks that can be done better by somebody else, somebody you will gladly pay to take the work off your hands. I have chosen in the past to do some home improvements on my own. It somehow always looks better in my mind than in real life; hence the electricians and carpenters parading through my home at the moment. I know my limits and I know what don’t want to do and what I need to be doing. . . . what I do best . . . which is not installing crown molding, or cleaning windows, or doing my taxes. I pay others to have those little pieces of my life back and save a few gray hairs in the process.

What are you trading your life for? What could you outsource that fits somebody else’s genius to save you the stress? How could you better use your time? What are you reading/watching/listening to? Are you moving yourself forward with your choices or are you treading water in your comfort zone and checking out? Learning new things gives us energy, passion, zest and zeal. Teaching does the same. Once you’ve learned something new, why not pass it along to others?

Here’s your challenge: don’t just delegate, eliminate. Create a stop-doing list along with your to-do list. Name your list a “policy” because most of us follow policies and we respond to policies vs. mere suggestions because a policy is a boundary. What is on your stop-doing list?

As the CEO (Chief Energizing Officer) at Hartful Living including and; I’m a Messenger and Mentor for women entrepreneurs, connecting them to their capacity to energize their work and their lives in the art of living Hartfully. At, you can make a living through giving with greeting cards and gifts to build your network net worth as an additive to your current business or an easy way to send gratitude and kindness to the world.