You Get Out What You Put In!

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Get Out What You Put In!

By: Kimberly Stevens

During a recent coaching session with Mark, I was briefly reminded of how it feels to give your all to your business and have it spit in your face.

"I just don't get it! I'm putting all my time and energy into this business, and I'm still scraping by. I'm so tired of fighting to 'just to make it' but this is what I really want to do."

"Tell me about what's happening in your life," I inquired.

"My wife says I'm spending too much time working, and I know she's right. But I also know that I'm the one who is responsible for paying most of the bills. As it is, I'm probably working 80 hours a week."

"I really want to spend more time with her and our son, but if we're barely making it now, I can't imagine what would happen if I slowed down. I'd lose the business for sure. What I need is more time, not less."

Oh, it was terrible to hear Mark experiencing such pain. It brought back all of the feelings I had also experienced during the first years of my business several years earlier.

He had fallen into the same trap that many of us do. He believed that his degree of business success was directly related to the number of hours he put in. And, I knew, that until we altered that belief, he would never be free to achieve great financial success and to enjoy the freedom that the life of a business owner can provide.

Somewhere along the way, many of us pick up the perceived connection between time and results. Yes, it's true that if you spend 10 hours a day practicing piano that you will likely be a better performer than if you spend 5 minutes a day. And that same logic might apply to specific skills you use in your business. If you spend 4 hours every day doing anything (creating graphic designs, writing press releases, writing sales letters), you will undoubtedly develop your skills.

But, in an endeavor like business, success is based on much more than the total amount of time you put in. It's based on what you do during that time, what skills you have, what customers want, how you present yourself, what you charge, how you market your business, etc.

Some things in life are easy ...

Staying Thin = Eating Well + Exercising Baking Cookies = Measuring Ingredients + Following Directions

The stinker part about running a business is that you get out what you put in. And, it's not easy to figure out what the monster wants to eat - but that's your job as a business owner.

If you spend countless hours networking at events that don't yield results, you are adding time to your week. If you re-create the wheel every time you have to put a proposal together, you are taking up time that you could be spending on other marketing activities, taking a lunch break, spending the afternoon with your spouse and kids. If you are starting numerous projects without bringing any of them to completion, you are wasting time spinning your wheels rather than profiting from one of those great ideas.

You see, it's important that you know where your time is going, what results you are getting from how you spend it, and what price you are paying (both professionally and personally) for spending so much time in your business.

Please don't take years to learn this one. It's a truth. If you figure out what your monster wants to eat, and you feed it to him on a regular basis, he will give you the key to the kingdom!

Are you ready to find out what you've been feeding your monster (i.e. "what you're putting into your business)?

Don't hate me when I ask you to track your time. 'How boring' you might say. Doesn't she understand that taking the time to track my time just takes more time (you can read that line again if you need to!)

Yes, it can be boring and it does take a little bit of time. However, if you invest tiny little bits of time throughout the day (adding up to only 10 minutes/day probably), you can discover the keys to propelling your business forward.

Start today by tracking how you spend your time (track every 15 minute segment) for the next 5-7 days. Include all the time you spend working, including evenings and weekends.

After the week is over, look back over the completed worksheets and tell me what you see. Look for things like:

  • breakdown the number of hours you are spending on:
    • marketing
    • providing your services
    • office work (invoicing, paying bills)
    • email
    • other functions
  • add up the number of hours it takes you to do certain standard functions that are part of your business
    • attending a meeting (driving to/from + meeting)
    • writing a proposal
    • adding a new client to your practice
    • doing your accounting work

Too much time spent on office work could tell you that you need to outsource some of your administrative work.

Too much time spent on email might tell you that you need to stop reading so many ezines (except mine!), only read/answer personal email during off hours, or learn how to use the sorting function of your email program so the most important emails are highlighted.

Too much time spent on marketing efforts that are not yielding new customers could tell you that it's time to quit that networking club or stop using direct mail, so you'll have more time to invest in the types of marketing that are working well for your business (where have your current customers come from? Do more of that!)

Too much time spent attending prospect meetings might tell you that you need to reduce the geographic area you are targeting in order to decrease the time it takes to go to/from prospect and client meetings.

Too much time spent writing a proposal might tell you that you need to automate your process more so that you only have to input a few items of data to create each new proposal, contract, or spreadsheet.

There is so much to learn by tracking your time. Yes, it might be boring, but it's an investment of 10 minutes a day for a week that might just buy you the freedom and financial success you've been seeking.

About The Author

Kimberly Stevens is the author of the ebook series, *The Profitable Business Owner: A Step-by-Step System for Starting & Running a Successful Service Business*. Download Sample Chapters & get her free MiniCourse, *The 10 Most Common Mistakes Business Owners Make & How To Avoid Them* at:


L 17.11.2009. 18:55

How do I put the new registration sticker on my license plate? Do I put it right over the expired sticker or do I have to scrape it off somehow and put the new one on?


Admin 17.11.2009. 18:55

You can leave the old sticker there if you want, and put the new one right on top of it. A good tip is to take a razor blade and slice from one corner to the other (diagonally) so that it cannot be removed - When I lived in california they used to get stolen and they did that a lot there.


Joe 02.04.2013. 14:01

Can you put down pre-emergent for crabgrass at any time before germination? Can you put it on too early?


Admin 02.04.2013. 14:01

For the pre-emergent herbicide to be effective, it MUST be applied BEFORE the crabgrass seed germinates. ... Crabgrass typically germinates when the soil temperature is ... You can check out the weather station at the Olathe Horticulture ... So I would get your Step 1, your pre-emergent down on your lawn

One of the sourest phrases that can be directed at a child or adult is I told you so! ... ?We put down pre-emergent herbicide twice this spring but now we have ... I was able to get from him the soil temperature data from Cherokee Town and ... Pre-emergent herbicides MUST be applied BEFORE crabgrass seed germinate.


Ryan M. 10.05.2011. 23:30

How do you put 3 pictures on a canvis on Photoshop Eliments 9? I need to put 3 photos on a canvas in Photoshop Elements 9, and every time I put 3 photos on photoshop, it wont allow me to put it on 1 canvas, well, really, I just don't know how to. Can you help?

Ryan M.

Admin 10.05.2011. 23:30

Do you have to put 3 photos side-by-side or superimpose 3 photos?

Here's the instructions for side-by-side:
Pick the 3 photos and open in Elements. Next, Open a new file. For now because I don't know if your pictures are portrait or landscape orientation, let's try 10 inches X 10 inches. (We can make it smaller later.) In the new file dialog: 300 dpi (if you're posting to the web: 72 dpi), white background.

OK, now for some hocus pocus. We're going to use the Crop Tool to make the photos fit. Click on the Crop Tool. In the Options bar: Preset: Use Photo Ratio. Width= 3 inches. Click and hold in the upper left corner of the picture and drag diagonally to the lower right corner. You want the cropping boundary to run completely along the border of the picture. When it's where it should be click on the green commit arrow. To this for the other 2 photos. Use the Move Tool to drag each of the photos onto the blank file and position them.

If there's a lot of white background showing, use the Crop Tool set to No Restriction to remove it. If you want the new collage to be a certain size, say 6 in X 4 in for printing, type these numbers and the "in" that goes with them into the Height and Width boxes. Drag a crop box around the photo, drag the sides or move it until you've got it where you want it then click the green checkmark.

Use File>Save As... and give your new creation a new name. If you leave the name of one of the photos on it, that picture will be destroyed.

Here are some instructions for superimposing them:;_ylt=AggB5CFdGap9hmM19SAKdcrty6IX;_ylv=3?qid=20110507125807AAAzGL1


julie who 25.07.2010. 17:12

How do I put my digital photos from my camera on to my computer.? Do I need to put the camera cd disk into the computer or do i just put the lead from the camera into the computer (Done that)., then what? I`m getting so frustrated.

julie who

Admin 25.07.2010. 17:12

you just put the lead in and a thing should pop up with differnt option like import using windows media players and stuff like that then just click your prefered option :) hope i helped lol


Kristina R 18.02.2008. 18:23

How much coffee do you put in a Starbucks Aroma Solo coffeemaker? I put in 5 1/3 tablespoons, which is what they say to put in the manual. Once you brew the single tumbler, it seems really strong and there is a lot of excess in the filter. What do you recommend?

Kristina R

Admin 18.02.2008. 18:23

Starbucks usually always doubles up on how much coffee should be put in there, because a lot of their fans prefer strong coffee. (for me, their recommendations are perfect)

If you think it is too strong, I suggest going down to around 3 TBSPs. If that is too weak, then work your way back up until you find a taste you like.

best of luck!


Colonel_Crawfish 11.10.2012. 07:20

How to put links on your youtube channel page? I am wondering how you put in links, when I say that I mean like clickable buttons, on your channel page. Say I want to put in a link/button that leads to a facebook page how would I do that? Thanks in advance


Admin 11.10.2012. 07:20

When on your channel page, by the description it says edit. Click on that, and a little window opens. If you are allowed to have links, there will be blanks to put them in that window.


JK47 28.08.2007. 05:46

What happens when you put sour skittles in soda and drink it? My buddy put half a pack of skittles in my soda and i drank it.


Admin 28.08.2007. 05:46

You would probably fizz a lot.
If you swallow it most likely will need to stay near a tilet the next day. Will give you terrible runs? I don't know..this branch of science of SO underfunded.
You should take som,e Sour Skittles and put them in a glass of coke just to make sure it doesnt make a coke/mentos explosion.
Remember the eye wear and record your data!


b0b 16.09.2008. 19:17

How to put a specific program from your computer onto a flash drive? How do you put a specific program from your computer onto a flash drive?


Admin 16.09.2008. 19:17

During the software installation it will ask you where you want to put it.


schuwin 28.01.2009. 05:11

How are piping materials put together, from pipes to flanges all the way to the last bolt and nut? how piping materials are put together? is there a site i can see an illustration of how it is put together?


Admin 28.01.2009. 05:11

I just googled this recently and came up with a lot of sites. I would put in if you want to do pvc pipe or copper or any of that. Either way it seems fairly easy to do.


pinetreeforest123 04.05.2007. 15:02

What plants/trees put out a lot of oxygen? I'm looking to put a small tree and MORE plants in my room. Do people have recommendations on what plants and trees put out a good amount of oxygen? Thanks!


Admin 04.05.2007. 15:02

They ALL do! Just pick plants that are pleasing to you that fit in with your decor. Make sure that you put the pot that you are going to plant a tree in on a base with casters so that you can move it. Some plants require more work than others, and must have certain lighting conditions, watering requirements, etc. Go to a local nursery and they can help you select plants that are ideal for your environment (and the advice is free!)

Good luck!


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