I am going to confess something here.
I am lazy! Like super lazy!
I spent at least twenty hours a week on the couch staring at my phone, much to the disgust of my fiancé.
I will usually choose fast food over a home cooked meal and skip a few gym sessions, much to the disgust of my trainer.
Before meeting my fiancé, I don’t think I cleaned my house properly for over a year (#batchlife), again much to the disgust of my fiancé (I seriously do not know why she agreed to marry me!)
And while I am no Warren Buffet, I like to think I am doing reasonably well financially.
Here’s why – because I choose to work smarter, not harder.
Two Kinds of Laziness
There are two different types of laziness; it is Good Lazy and Bad Lazy
Bad Lazy: Those who refuse to do the work needed to provide for themselves, their family and their community around them. Those who sit on the couch watching TV all day and letting their short time on this earth slip by them. Those who think that good things will fall into their lap, rather than going out and doing it themselves. They spend their life miserable, complaining and hating on those who are out there making a positive difference in people’s lives.
Good Lazy: Those who realise they only have a certain amount of time each week and they cannot do everything themselves. They focus on what they are good at or what they enjoy doing. And if it doesn’t fall into the above categories, then they pay someone else to do it.
Another confession, I have been bad lazy at times. And I still do on occasions. After a rotten day at work where nothing goes right, I usually get my “sulky introvert” out and want to be left alone. Thankfully my fiancé has figured out the right amount of time for me to have ‘a moment’ before telling me (either nicely or forcefully, depends what I need) to snap out of it.
I only share this with you because I believe all of us get into these moods at times. Even the most positive and mentally strong people I know have ‘Bad Lazy Days’.
The Art of Delegation
But overall, I would like to think of myself as Good Lazy. And all wealthy people have mastered the art of being Good Lazy. If I were writing a university course, Good Lazy would be defined as ‘Delegation’.
I don’t try and do everything myself. There are things that I do that I do not enjoy doing at all. And there are other things that other people do better.
For example, I hate gardening and cleaning. I take absolutely no joy in getting the mower out and mowing my lawn or getting the vacuum out to clean the carpet. In my opinion, life is too short to spend cleaning and mowing, and I hate doing it.
So, I pay someone $30 per hour to do it for me. They enjoy doing it, it is what they are passionate about, and they run a very good business doing that for people.
I am happy that I don’t have to do it – they are happy because they get paid to do what they love. Everyone wins.
But there are things that I delegate because I know other people can do it better.
You may be surprised, but I don’t do my tax returns. I pay an accountant to do my tax returns because I know they will do it better. I know that for every dollar I pay my accountant, I will get an extra two dollars back. My accountant knows more about what I can and cannot claim so I am happy to tap into their knowledge and for them to do the work for me.
It bugs me when people say they “saved $X” because they did their tax returns themselves because I know that they haven’t saved squat – they have cost themselves even more money because they have missed deductions on their tax that they weren’t aware of. Cheap people never become rich – they are Pinching Pennies and Missing Millions.
Here’s a thought – how many wealthy people do you know do their tax returns? I can’t think of any off the top of my head.
So, the question is if wealthy and successful people are paying other to do their tax return, why aren’t you?
So how do you become Good Lazy?
If you have never heard of the concept of delegation, I would highly recommend reading The Four-Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss. He takes the concept of delegation to the extreme, but if you read his book you will get ideas on how to master the art of ‘Good Lazy’.
Firstly, you have to increase your income. If you are only earning $20 per hour and you are paying your cleaner $30 per hour, then basic maths will suggest you are going to go backwards financially. To become a master of Good Lazy, you have to be earning a good income.
Secondly, (and this ties into my first point) you have to do the hard work. I know that flies in the face of being lazy, but to earn an above average income, you have to do the work. This may mean doing some formal study, changing careers or getting a second job. But if you are doing what you love and are getting paid for it, it doesn’t feel like hard work.
Finally, you need good people around you who can give you good advice. This doesn’t always mean professional advice (although that is an important component of what I am saying), but it also means the people that you surround yourself on a regular basis. You are the average of the five people you hang around the most. You need to get yourself into a community of people who have a positive mindset who can help and challenge you to grow.
This doesn’t just apply financially; this applies to all areas of your life. As the saying goes, you won’t lose weight if you keep hanging around Maccas!
If you are prepared to do the work and want to surround yourself with a community of “Good Lazy” people please go to www.MasterYourMoneyNow.com.au/getstarted. We have a package to suit your needs.
About the Author:
Chris Carlin is the director and financial planner of Master Your Money Now. Chris is passionate about helping others achieve their financial goals and live out their dream lifestyle. Chris has been delivering advice for over seven years to Australians seeking to increase their income, understand super, protect their loved ones and plan for retirement. Chris is a regular commentator on blogs, LinkedIn and Instagram on finance-related topics.