Time Money Optimization®
Coaching for individuals, couples, and the self-employed seeking to improve their financial health and sustainability.
A balanced approach where YOU learn and build the structure that moves you forward on your life’s journey.Register Here
Time Money Optimization®
Introduction and Overview
At a time when we face so many challenges, uncertainties, and messages about what we should do and how we should react, we often do not know which way to turn.
This coaching process guides you toward positive change. Together, we will explore your unique journey and identify healthy and sustainable solutions that will realize the life you envisioned for yourself.
This program is for people who want more control over their destinies and improve the quality of their life experiences.
Both Time and Money are valuable yet finite resources.
TMO (Time Money Optimization®) is a coaching program for daily decision-making that helps you realize your goals, values, and needs while achieving and maintaining financial stability.
TMO is not easy to condense or fully grasp in a general overview. However, my intention here is to provide some understanding of the TMO process and how it may be relevant to your situation. TMO is a discussion and a process to improve outcomes and focuses on meeting you where you are today. It teaches you to make decisions that build a foundation for your best self. It provides a framework that gives you more confidence in your abilities, more certainty about your strategic direction, and more control over your life and your experiences.
Let’s dive in.
First, let’s establish a few key concepts.
Key Concept #1: The Gap.
Some stress is good: it keeps us moving and doing the things we need to do, including making necessary changes.
However, stress that causes a breakdown in any area of our lives is not good.
Sometimes a breakdown can show up in one area of our life when the cause is in another area of our life, even when it is not immediately obvious. Anxiety attacks not driven by an underlying medical condition are a good example. A person may or may not specifically identify the area(s) that is/are triggering the anxiety attack. Likely candidates include the number of working hours, lack of skills or support needed to accomplish the current work needs, lack of sleep, family relation challenges, amount of home life/personal responsibility, financial stress (not enough money for current spending patterns, or lack of organization), failure to complete important projects with potentially impactful consequences, and lack of downtime to rest, recharge, and reconnect with key people in your life.
A breakdown is when something is not working well and causes unhappiness, unhealthy stress, or angst. You know there is a breakdown when you have that feeling that something is NOT RIGHT. Something in your life is not working as it should. Something in your life is not working right for you.
Aside: You are a unique individual. No one else is exactly like you with your biological makeup, strengths, limitations, and past history that brings you to who you are and what you need to be your best. Therefore, you cannot compare yourself to what is right or wrong for someone else. That is totally irrelevant unless you are using a specific trait or experience you see that you would like to transform in yourself. Every day you are only comparing and competing with the you of yesterday against the goals you have for your tomorrow. Your only real competition is with yourself.
Regardless of what the world is saying, each person is whole when they achieve what is healthy for them, period. Comparing yourself to others is not helpful nor is it achievable because no two people have the same life experiences or situations.
In TMO, this breakdown is called The Gap. The size of The Gap depends upon the amount of distance between Your Expectations and Your Reality of any given situation or issue.
If you choose to apply it, TMO can help you identify The Gap in your life and give you the control you need to shrink or even eliminate The Gap.
I will say this again because it is an important and new concept: The difference between your expectation of a situation/issue and your reality of that situation/issue is The Gap.
The size of The Gap is directly proportional to the amount of unhappiness, unhealthy stress, or angst. The size of The Gap equals the size of dissatisfaction in your life.
There can be many Gaps in your life at one time. They can exist in different components of your life, such as work, health, relationship challenges, and others and each Gap can be of a different size or significance to you in varying degrees of unhappiness. Each could be manageable on its own. However, the cumulative effect can cause significant distress.
The goal is to bring your Expectations and your Reality closer and reduce The Gap. TMO coaching addresses The Gap through awareness of how the gap was created, evaluating what healthy actions can be taken while considering consequences, and initiating a timeline to shrink The Gap.
The result is greater confidence that you possess the ability to achieve life satisfaction, productivity, contentment, success, or whatever you want to call it as you repeatedly work through the process to reduce The Gap.
Gaps will always be a part of our existence. However, TMO provides the tools to productively address them, minimize them, and manage them.
Key Concept #2: Everyone is an Entrepreneur.
It would add value if every adult individual or family had a mindset of operating like a well-run small business.
Successful businesses, people, and families have these areas in common:
They require revenue/income to pay for all expenses. W2 jobs, 1099 contractors, gifts (donations), investments, etc.
They have operational expenses. In business, we recognize these as rent/lease, payroll, direct costs, and overhead expenses. In our personal lives, they are mortgage/rent, piano lessons, gym membership, clothing, food, utilities, repairs, furniture, lawn care… you get the idea.
They delegate responsibilities. At work, roles are clear when we see Office Manager, IT Specialist, Accountant, HR Generalist, Sales Rep, Engineer, and Mechanic. However, at home, singles and families need a Chef, Kitchen Staff, Chauffeur, Housekeeper, Maintenance, General Contractor, Landscaper, Errand Runner, Bookkeeper, Caretaker, Project Manager, Counselor, and Coach. These roles have to be filled just like roles at work.
They have systems and processes. We generally can identify when these work or not in our work environments and we may or may not have the ability to improve them. While many of us work from home, our homes need to function well, with effective processes to care for and maintain the home and those who live inside. After all, look at the list of expenses you are putting into it already in #2. You are in charge of operations and you get to build the systems and processes.
They practice teamwork and cooperation. While home life has its differences from work life, the approach to success is the same. When everyone is on board with goals and actions, teamwork and cooperation become possible and drive synergy. Support of one another, trust, respect, reliability, recognition, and appreciation can only improve life satisfaction.
This new way of thinking is meant to help you see what is required to operate your home efficiently, effectively, and successfully and contribute to this overall process.
Key Concept #3: We have One Life that is made up of Nine Elements.
For most of us, our work life and our family life are interconnected. Our lives are actually One Life. We often hear people say they want work/life balance. But what does that really mean? Most descriptions of work/life balance miss many details and how to get there.
TMO views our life through Nine Elements that are uniquely and individually defined to make us whole. Reflect on the following Nine Elements and ask yourself these questions:
How will I intentionally schedule time for health in my life with physical activity, good nutrition, and relaxation? What support will I access to maintain my body and mind both physically and emotionally, in an optimal way?
RD: Research & Development
What more will I do to improve my areas of interest? What education, certifications, partnerships, or tools will help advance my career and improve my revenue-making potential? How will I develop skills to reach the level of expertise I want to achieve? What fields or resources will I explore? What is my ideal work environment and how can I make that happen? How will becoming a recognized expert in my field change my life?
TAC: Travel, Administration, Caring.
This category keeps our personal lives together. These are the day-to-day responsibilities we have to those we care for and have commitments to, such as a spouse, significant other, children, pets, extended family, etc. What administrative tasks are required to run my home and how will they be delegated? How will I optimize my driving time for efficiency? Which chores are my responsibility: laundry, cleaning, cooking, dishes, shopping, yard work, auto maintenance, etc.? Can I outsource one or more responsibilities and maintain my budget and how? How can I multitask with other elements, such as cleaning (TAC) while catching up with a friend (SC) on the phone, or taking a walk (HE) with my Spouse and/or Pet (TAC)?
How many hours of sleep do I get each night? What will I do to ensure I have the right amount for me? How will starting each day with energy and clarity change my life?
How is time prioritized for those activities that directly produce revenue/income? Which product or service offerings through my skills and knowledge will bring the most value to my clients or place of employment? What pay rate will meet or exceed my income needs? What motivates me to build the skills that interest me and how can I use those skills to help others? How will it feel to consistently meet these obligations? What will it look like when I am making a positive difference in others’ lives through my work?
Some time is unaccounted time. How do I leave space to rest, relax, and clear my mind? Where am I when I feel most relaxed? How will it change my life knowing I have a time cushion built into my weekly routine?
Projects have a clear beginning and end. What projects are currently on my mind? How will I break down these projects into manageable time segments? When will I fit these into my schedule? Who will help me? What will the results be of accomplishing these projects?
SC: Social & Communication
We are social beings. Bonding and connecting with others is a significant element in our lives. Who are my social groups? Which family and friends will I schedule time with over the next 30 – 60 days? How will those relationships contribute to my life in a meaningful way? What relationships will I work to improve? Who has my ear and what messages am I hearing? Are these messages sustainable, healing, and foundational to my well-being? What relationships are unhealthy at this time and how will I make changes? Where will I reach out to make new, healthy connections?
BL: Bucket List
Special experiences or achievements a person hopes to have or accomplish during their lifetime have a special place. What are my bucket list items? How will I feel when I achieve each one? What is the first one I will seek? When will I accomplish it?
Take some time to reflect on each of these Nine Elements. How would I design each one uniquely for me? Everything in your life will fit into one of these elements.
How can I use this framework to envision a work/life balance defined by me?
We all manage each of these elements to some degree by default. However, we often manage them in a reactive way based on external demands put upon us. By proactively addressing each of these elements in your life and including them in your system, you will take giant steps toward living intentionally and proactively.
How will I feel when I am proactive with my time and scheduling activities that matter the most to me?
Being intentional with each of these Nine Elements is foundational to defining your values and needs in order to reach your goals.
Now let’s dive into Time Money Optimization®.
Treating time as a budgeted, tangible, and finite resource has many benefits. In our super-busy lives, it is very important to understand that being busy is not the same as being effective.
We all have 168 hours of time each week. How we use that time will determine our ability to stay in balance and achieve those things that are ultimately important to us.
How you use these 168 hours is significant: after all, you are exchanging a week of your life for the choices you make.
By viewing time as expendable, you will see it as a tangible resource and approach it proactively by:
Making time for health in ways that benefit your unique self,
Building skills and knowledge in areas you enjoy and provide you security,
Making personal decisions consistent with your values and goals,
Getting the appropriate sleep for clear thinking and daily energy,
Earning the revenue you want,
Gaining perspective and rejuvenation through your downtime,
Completing projects that move you forward,
Building relationships that offer encouragement and support,
Realizing bucket list activities for increased joy.
Treating money as a budgeted, tangible, and finite resource has many benefits. Money is not just transactional. It is a strategic resource that, if properly used, can grow your options and move you forward. Improperly used, money will shrink your options and hold you back. People usually think they just need more money. What they really need is to make better use of the money they have. TMO teaches you how to optimize your money through better decision-making.
One of the most important TMO tools is teaching you how to create the right budget for you. Financial budgets are a projection of expenses that align with your goals. In theory, we understand the value of having a budget; in practice, many people avoid using this valuable tool. In order to develop and use a budget, the budget process must be simple, relevant, valuable, and realistic.
The first step in this process is identifying your expenses and revenue streams that are consistent with your personal strengths, skills, and ability to execute in order to match these expense estimates. Aligning your expenses to your income and saving for the future is very important and will add significant reassurance to your life.
Debt will limit your ability to have options and should be avoided unless you use it as a bridge to achieve a major goal that can be paid off quickly, or as part of a larger financial strategy for gain. The only exception would be a home mortgage or a vehicle loan. However, that is an entirely different conversation for another program.
You will be provided worksheets and templates from which to build a system to track your income and expenses. You will be able to look into the future to observe income and spending trends to see if they are consistent with your goals and are cashflow positive.
This exercise will raise your awareness about the money you have, how and when you will make it, where you will spend it, and how you will track it through efficient and cost-effective systems that you can maintain yourself. In turn, this will help you envision and build a strategy to achieve your goals.
If I only had enough time, I could… If I only had enough money, I could… You fill in the blank. How many times have you heard this or even said it yourself? It is a vicious cycle. We often keep repeating this phrase to ourselves even after realizing our initial goals.
I have spent years observing the relationship between time and money and how they play into the quality of our lives. In many cases, neither time nor money is the sole solution. They are resources that help each of us achieve significant milestones.
Time and Money are finite resources. Therefore, we have to plan how we use both. We have to know what we have available to us and make the best decisions by asking ourselves: Is this decision consistent with my Time Resource, my Money Resource, and aligned with the goals I have set for myself within my Nine Elements?
This is Three-Dimensional Thinking: Using your time for intentional living that is financially sustainable and aligned with your priorities for a more fulfilling life.
I have reached the conclusion that the most effective way to answer the plea for enough time or enough money is to define what enough looks like for you. Enough time for what? Enough money for what? If we don’t know the answers to those questions, then when is enough? When will we feel satisfaction about the life we are living?
TMO provides tools, knowledge, perspectives, and guidance to equip and empower individuals, couples, and those who have chosen self-employment as their career path. The self-employed lifestyle has a set of unique challenges that could be overcome, resulting in better life balance and financial sustainability.
In a world where we have so many uncertainties, financial constraints, and demands on our time, we often lack resolve. Unhealthy stress, anxiety, and financial debt have soared. At a time when so much information is available to us, we lack answers and concrete solutions. Therefore, we have to build our own STRUCTURE that provides us with the CERTAINTY, CONFIDENCE, AND SENSE OF SECURITY we need to reduce The Gap and achieve the work/life balance we desire – a balance that’s clear, relevant, and can truly make a difference.
How you spend your time and money will become the life you build. It is that simple and that significant.