I’ve made it my personal mission to help 1,000 entrepreneurs double their income in 2019 while working 10 fewer hours a week. 

To many of you, this might sound like a pipe dream.

“Craig”, you might say, “There’s no way that I can really earn that much MORE money while working LESS… Is there?”

Well you can and–if you pay attention to the lessons I’m about to teach you–will.

Just like I helped Ben Mark, a photographer in London, UK, double his income in just 120 days…

And how I helped Frank Den Blanken, an online fitness expert, triple his business last year…

And how I helped Casey Arnold, a stay-at-home mom, to finally have a 6-figure year in her business, all while working only 30 hours per week…

BUT…

Accomplishing this goal will require you to think differently than you have in the past and make some radical changes to the way you manage your time, prioritize tasks, and plan your weeks.

To help you get started on your journey to “2X – 10 Less” I’ve put together this quick essay detailing the five proven practices that will allow you to double your revenue, enjoy more personal time, and live your perfect life.

Let’s get started.

1. Follow Mark Twain’s Advice to Conquer the Chaos of Your Weeks  

“If it’s your job to eat a frog, it’s best to do it first thing in the morning. And, if it’s your job to eat two frogs, it’s best to eat the biggest one first.” ~Mark Twain

Week after week–in fact every week–I have clients sending me messages that go something like this:

“Craig! Last week was a 5/10 for me. I failed to finish my #1 priority and feel like such a failure.”

… And I get it.

It’s easy to let your schedule get so out of control that you feel unable to take action on the important work that is required to propel your life forward.

But if you want to do big things with your life and create a lasting impact on the world, you must overcome this challenge and develop a ruthless attitude towards your priorities.

Whenever you’re planning your weeks, you must–not “should”–schedule your #1 priority on Monday morning.

Determine your biggest priority on Sunday morning while conducting your weekly planning and then devote your entire Monday morning (and afternoon, if necessary) to that task.

By accomplishing your most important task on the first day of the week, you will reduce the stress and anxiety you feel later in the week and free up your valuable mental bandwidth for other tasks and activities.

Success might be hard. But it’s a lot harder when you allow yourself to procrastinate and push off important tasks until the last minute.

Simplify your life and your goals by accomplishing your biggest priority first thing every week.

This subtle shift in the schedule and flow of your week will pay dividends in your peace of mind and performance later in the week.

2. Start EVERY Day with Legacy Work

One of the greatest challenges facing every performance on this planet is that our best work–the work that lights our souls on fire and brings real meaning into our life–is rarely the work for which we are immediately paid.

We all have books we want to write, movies we want to produce, businesses we want to build, charities we want to start, and legacies that we want to leave.

The only problem is that these activities rarely, if ever, keep the lights on during in the immediate future.

As a result, most of us put off this important work indefinitely, promising–or more accurately, lying to–ourselves and saying that we will make time for it when things “slow down”.

But let me ask you… When was the last time your life felt “slow”?

To build your legacy while still keeping food on the table you must take action now, even if it seems small and insignificant in the moment.

Although I encourage you to block off as much time as you can each morning to invest in your legacy work–even if it comes at the expense of meditation, reading, journalling, or exercise–I understand that three hours of uninterrupted deep work might not be possible in your current situation.

So what’s the solution to this dilemma? How do you create the masterpieces on which you’ve been procrastinating without risking your day job?

The same way that I did… Fifteen minutes at a time.

By waking up only fifteen minutes earlier every day and spending those fifteen minutes on non-urgent but important work you will slowly but surely make progress towards your biggest goals.

The bulk of of my books were written fifteen minutes at a time.

The majority of the products that I’ve created were built fifteen minutes at a time.

The best content that I’ve ever created was done fifteen minutes at a time.

You don’t need to radically alter your schedule, give up your favorite hobbies, or spend less time with your family to turn your dreams into reality.

You just need to commit to investing fifteen minutes a day into your most important work.

Try it for 90 days and I promise you will be amazed by the progress that you will make.

3. Stop Watching TV (For At Least 21 Days)

At the end of your life, when you find yourself sitting on your front porch quietly mulling over your life from the confines of your rocking chair I can promise you that you won’t say:

“Man! I’m so happy that I didn’t miss a single episode of Game of Thrones, Billions, the Wire, or the Office. I couldn’t be happier that I spent more than 96,000 hours–the average amount of time an American will spend watching TV in their lifetime–of my life lying on the couch watching other people be successful”.

It just won’t happen.  

As a reformed TV addict, I can tell you from firsthand experience that Television, when used in excess, is a parasite that steals your time and prevents you from fully experiencing life.

But this isn’t just my opinion. According to the research, non-viewers tend to lead richer and more fulfilling lives.

“Non-viewers do a greater variety of things in their free time than TV viewers,” said researcher Marina Krcmar, a professor of communication at North Carolina’s Wake Forest University. “It’s not just that they were reading instead of watching TV. They were hiking and biking, and going to community meetings and visiting with friends. Overall, they tend to do more of everything.”

So my challenge for you is simple.

Cut out all TV for the next 21 days.

Hate me now. Thank me later.

I promise that once you experience the dramatic boost in both productivity and fulfillment that comes from reducing the time you spend staring at the “boob tube”, you’ll never go back.

4. Take Time to Reflect On Your Performance and Answer these Questions Each Week

Although goal setting and future planning are important pillars of success and achievement, one of the most important–and often overlooked–habits of high achievers is spending time each week in intentional reflection and introspection.

This doesn’t mean that you waste your time wishing you could go back and change the past or regretting decisions that you made during your previous week.

Rather that you invest time each week to learn from and analyze your performance over the last week.

I recommend that you block off one hour of time every Sunday morning to reflect on your previous week and the way that you showed up in your business, family, and personal life.

Here are the 10 questions that I send to each of my clients and employees every week and questions that I challenge you to answer moving forward.

1) Rate last week on a scale of 1-10 (ten being amazing) 

2) What was your biggest priority last week?

3) Did you accomplish it, and if not, why not?

4) What did you learn last week?

5) What was your biggest business highlight last week?

6) What was your biggest obstacle?

7) What do you need to solve it?

8) What was your biggest personal highlight last week?

9) What needs to happen to make this week a success?

10) What do you need help with and who do you need to contact?

If you will take the time to do this each week, I promise that you will experience a drastic improvement in your productivity and performance.

5. Remember the Two Keys to Success

Finally, if you are serious about achieving your biggest goals in 2019 and making this year your year, you must remember the final two keys to success.

Environment and accountability.

If your environment and social circle are not intentionally engineered to facilitate the success and fulfillment you desire, then none of your other strategies or tactics I’ve taught you today will matter.

When you are surrounded by toxic people, working in a cluttered office, or in an environment that makes it easy to give into your biggest vices (e.g. leaving an entire chocolate cake in your fridge while trying to lose weight), you are actively sabotaging yourself and your happiness.

Conversely, when you intentionally place high-quality people in your life, engineer your environment to make sticking to your most important habits easy, and cut out the negative influences from your life, success and fulfillment become a natural byproduct.

My challenge for you in 2019 is to consciously craft and environment that supports mandates the achievement of your goals.

Sign up for high-level masterminds. Hire a coach. Join Facebook groups that are relevant to your niche or industry. Save up some cash and move to a new city if you have to!

Do whatever it takes to put yourself in the right environment and cultivate radical accountability to people you deeply do not want to disappoint.

Always remember: Gold in, gold out. Garbage in, garbage out.

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Craig Ballantyne

Craig Ballantyne is the author of The Perfect Day Formula: How to Own the Day and Control Your Life. Craig has been a contributor to Men's Health magazine for over 17 years. Today he teaches his gift to high-performing entrepreneurs how to squeeze more out of their days, increase their income, and make more quality time for their families in his Perfect Life Workshop and Work-Life Mastery programs. Craig used his own advice to overcome crippling anxiety attacks in 2006, and he'll teach you his 5 Pillars of Success so you can increase your income, decrease your work time, and live the life of your dreams. Learn more about Craig at craigballantyne.com

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