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Making Time to Build Your Business – The 168 Hour Assignment

No one has spare time. We all go to bed at night having used every hour of the day. The clock strikes midnight and there is not one second to be spared. Everything on your “to do” list that was not crossed out will surely be on the same list tomorrow along with several new tasks, yet no more time to complete them all. This vicious cycle of chasing time, never having enough hours in a day, and seeing your co-workers every Monday thinking, “Wow! The weekend just flies by…” makes it difficult to find spare time to build a home-based business.News flash: NOBODY has the time! We all have familial duties, personal and social obligations, household chores, full or part-time jobs, church commitments, pets, carpool, school, volunteer work, emails, voicemails and regular mail… the list goes on and on. None of us are up at 9:17 PM each night twiddling our thumbs and waiting for the minutes to pass until bedtime. We all use 1,440 minutes every day without any time leftover. This busy-ness prevents many people from taking a closer look at network marketing. It may seem inconceivable to fit a business into a jam-packed schedule. For those of us already in network marketing, this objection of “I just don’t have the time!” is hard to overcome.How do some people, despite busy schedules, manage to find time to build a network marketing business? These people simply are doing a better job of allocating their time than the person holding onto the excuse that they simply don’t have the time. Our challenge as sponsors is to help our prospects and team members realize that they do have the time; they are simply choosing to spend it in other areas of their life. Furthermore, the time that could be spent building a business is often wasted watching TV, surfing the internet, or participating in social activities that will in no way contribute to one’s financial health in the long run.An exercise I introduce to many prospects and distributors that are stuck in the “I don’t have the time!” mindset is the “168 Hour Assignment”. 168 hours represents the number of hours we all have each week, which is 24 hours in a day multiplied by seven days in one week. The first step is to list every activity that a person does to find out where the 168 hours is spent. It is important to account for every hour of the day, so sleeping, eating, dressing, driving and commuting, working, exercise, cooking, shopping, church, family time, household chores, television, and social activities should all be written out. Each activity is assigned an amount of time so that the total for the week equals 168 hours. Now, each activity must be categorized into one of two columns: negotiable and non-negotiable. Non-negotiable time is that which cannot be compromised at this time, such as being at a job or taking the kids to school. Everything that is absolutely not in the non-negotiable column is where sacrifices will be made to find spare time to build a business.It may seem strict or even unfair that sacrifices must be made to find time to put into your business. If I sense resistance from a prospect or team member, I let them know that what one must give up in order to pursue network marketing is short term. Furthermore, to have the life that we truly desire but never had, we need to be willing to do things we have never done. This means turning off the television at night and spending it building our business. It means quitting a bowling league or knitting circle. Time that is spent working out, having lunch with friends and co-workers, and going to the movies must be used towards building a business. In network marketing we go to sleep later and we get up earlier. These behaviors add up to five, 10 or 20 extra hours over the course of a week. One may feel that they are entitled to a night with friends or a little TV time each evening after a long day at work, but unless you are winning the entire “American Idol” competition, then watching it is a waste of time and in no way contributing to the financial independence of you and your family.When we continue to do things as we always have done them, we will continue to get the results we have right now. The 168 Hour Assignment is one step towards changing your schedule so that you can change your life. Do this assignment yourself, then share it with your team. And the next time a prospect tells you, “This sounds great, but I just don’t have the time,” you can say, ” Get a piece of paper and make two columns.”

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