Every day I need time to do nothing. To literally sit outside and enjoy this amazing, beautiful day. I need time to stop, think, meditate and pray, to take care of my heart and soul. Be conscious about what’s going on around me. Be objective about my life and how I’m spending it, because I really want to spend my life well. I want to live it to its fullest. I want to maximize it.
My ultimate goal is not to be rich. My ultimate goal is not even to be a successful entrepreneur. My ultimate goal is to create passive income so that I can give back and help people. I want to do things I love, and I want to do them for the people I love. It’s about creating a path where I am not restricted to working my life away for someone else.
That’s the reason I became an entrepreneur. I wanted to impact the world. I wanted to impact my family, and I wanted the time and freedom to do things I wanted. Not so I could say “I get to do whatever I want whenever I want it,” but because that freedom allows me to do things intentionally, with purpose.
So if I decide to watch a TV show with my wife, it’s intentional, not because I’m shirking responsibility. If I decide to work 10 hours on a product I want to sell, it’s intentional. But I can choose to do that instead of following someone else’s orders. Not because I need the independence to prove myself, but I will grow so much more doing it myself and not for a boss.
When I take time to be still and meditate, it helps my heart and mind to be calm. I don’t have to always be caught up with what is going on. Then when I come back and refocus, I can run as hard as I can.
It’s similar to working out. A lot of people forget that your muscles need time to rebuild after you exercise. They need time to repair themselves. If you don’t give them that time, they’ll never grow to where they need to be. It’s really important that you take time to do something that replenishes you on the inside. That could be spending time with a loved one, thinking by yourself, going on a walk, working out, going to the beach, or treating yourself to a really nice dinner and a cup of wine. Whatever it is, you need downtime.
On the other hand, when you work, you have to give it your all. Work as if your life depends on it. Don’t dabble here and dabble there. Learn to not do the urgent little things. Don’t get on Facebook and respond to really quick questions, because in reality you’re postponing a bigger thing you need to do, whether that is to work on a new product, talk to a supplier, or read a bunch of reviews.
There’s a video on YouTube, I absolutely love it. It’s called “Eat that Frog.”
I taught this to my whole family. It’s really good. It says at the beginning of your day, you should do the hardest things first. Then the rest of your day goes better.
Do you ever have that moment when you need to do something, but when you sit down there is a resistance, a push-away? “I don’t want to do that yet.” “Oh, I need to check my email.” “I need to catch up on messages.” “I forgot to get the mail.”
It’s a weird thing, but it’s real. Be aware of it. Kill that thought and do the exact opposite of what you feel like doing.
One of the best ways to grow is to do the opposite of what you’re feeling. So if you’re feeling tired, go work out. If you’re feeling energetic, be still for five minutes without moving. Try it sometimes. It will train you to not be controlled by your impulses and feelings.
There are three things I do that have helped me a lot, and I hope they are helpful to you.
Number one: Take time for you.
Make sure you take time to do what you need to do to recuperate yourself. Take time to enjoy laughter. The idea that in order to be wealthy you have to sacrifice time with people you love and sacrifice your hobbies is ridiculous. There is no reason you can’t have both.
When you’re building passive income, you do have time to work with another business partner. You do have time to spend time with your loved ones. You do have time to do your hobbies, and you do have time to work. That’s the whole point of passive income. The number one thing passive income gives you is not money. It’s time.
That’s the difference. That’s the key. That’s the transition. It shifts you from being paid for your time to being paid for your value. There’s a huge difference between the two. Someone with a 9-5 job is being paid for their time. You will never get that time back. I know it’s a depressing thought, but you will never get the last day you worked at your job back, and that is one fewer day you have left to live on this Earth.
So when you build up passive income, you’re really building time for yourself. And then you do have time to work and play, you see? That’s why it’s so important that you take time for yourself. Otherwise you’re going to burn out. No one can go 100% non-stop. It’ll kill you after a while. You have to sleep. You have to play. We were made to be able to enjoy a variety of things, not just work all the time. So I encourage you, take time for you.
Number two: Ask this simple question before every task. “Is this going to help me reach my goal?”
At the end of the day, if you don’t reach your goal, then all your activity is going nowhere.
I’ll give you an example. A lot of people spend tons of time worrying about their logo. Do not worry about the logo for your company. Just make one that’s clean, simple and cool-looking. People don’t fall in love with a logo. They fall in love with what it represents.
The Apple logo would mean something very different if Steve Jobs had not started the company. The reason the Apple logo has great value and is the number one most valuable brand on earth is because of the experience, the products, and the design that was created around that logo. The logo’s value is based on the work that was done behind it.
A logo is not going to make or break your store. It never has and never will. There are some horrible logos out there that people love, not because the logo is cool, but because the company behind it is amazing.
So make sure you ask this question: Is my activity right now going to help me reach my goal?
This also begs another question. Do you know your goals? What is your goal? Your goal isn’t to build passive income. Your goal is something beyond that. Passive income is a means to an end. It may be to visit places in the world. It may be to start up an orphanage. It may be to build up a massive company. It may be to have more time with your loved ones. Know your goals.
Number three: Become friends with the uncomfortable.
Become really good buddies with uncomfortable. Don’t live by your impulses. Do the opposite of what you feel like doing. If you’re really really cold, go take a cold shower sometime. Or if you are really tired and nodding off to sleep, go do a bunch of pushups. Go talk to the most uncomfortable person of your family members around Thanksgiving time.
Do things that make you uncomfortable because you can not build passive income if you don’t become okay with uncomfortable. You will have to do things that you don’t like and that you get tired of in order to achieve the results you want. A lot of people, when they start getting uncomfortable, will immediately blame. “Well, I’m hungry,” or “I’m tired,” or “I’m distracted,” or “I’m not feeling well.” Most of the time those are just a bunch of BS excuses because they don’t want to face reality. “I don’t like discomfort.”
Look at it this way. You have to be willing to be uncomfortable now if you want to be very comfortable later. But if you pursue comfort now, you will always be uncomfortable with your life.
This is Seth Kniep, Kniep’n it real. Take time to take care of yourself. Take time to do nothing. This is how you stay in the game of passive income.