Can we work smarter and earn more?

In Latest, Money cents by Donna Willan

Work smart, earn more

Can we work less, still work well and earn enough money? I think about this a lot. I am tired of working long hours and feeling like work dominates everything. I don’t want my children to grow up to replicate this workaholic lifestyle – so I need to change something. But what? How can we work less, work well and earn well?

Well, I don’t have any definitive answers –  sorry! But I have a few ideas I am going to test out over the next while. I think if I can do these I may be able to work less hours, but still produce quality work, and get the money!

  • Work smart: I have read a lot about this, and it seems we can improve efficiency in a couple of ways. Firstly, limit emails – only look at them two/ three times a day; put aside email time and deal with them and then close the emails. Having them constantly popping up interrupts, distracts and wastes time.
  • Schedule meetings back to back in blocks. Also ensure you have significant blocks of time that are meeting-free and email-free to focus on ‘real work’. Analyse yourself, “When am I most effective?” I do my best thinking in the morning, so I should do my ‘big thinking’ work in the mornings.
  • Stop the guilt: there seems to be a growing culture, even competition perhaps, around everyone ‘working too hard and being stressed’. It sort of feels like one ‘ought to be over-worked and stressed’, and somehow it’s becoming a sign of success. Let’s stop that; let’s proudly say, “Actually, no, I have changed how I work – I am no longer over-worked and stressed, but I still work well”.
  • Separate working well from working long hours: working long hours does not necessarily mean we work harder, better or have more demanding jobs. In fact, it may mean we don’t work efficiently at all. I think it’s a mental shift; we need to reclaim our self from our work – we need to proudly say “I work less, and my work is still great.”

These are my initial thoughts; I am going to practice them for a while and see how it goes. I’ll let you all know in a few months’ time if it’s working, and whether I am working less, working well and still earning well.

As I write this I am about to contract someone to build us a garden deck – seven years of planning and finally we are doing it! In my next column I’ll tell you all about how we are affording it.

Donna


Money Cents blog

Meet the Just One Lap team at these free live events

Click here to meet the Just One Lap team at one of our live, free events.

Subscribe to Just One Lap