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Successful People Have More Time

by Rick Baker
On Oct 12, 2010
A Sales Tweet* introduced this philosophy a few weeks ago…here it is:
Successful people pick up and return more phone calls. Don’t ignore successful people. Call one today.
Successful people have more time.
I observe many business people, some successful and some not-so-successful. Watching what they do and listening to what they say…it seems to me, successful people have more time.
Of course, that’s misstated: everyone knows each of has only 24 hours per day.
The fact is successful people use their time more efficiently and effectively and this is integral to their success.
So, from the observer’s perspective – it seems successful people have more time.
As examples:
  • Successful people tend to return phone calls far more often than not-so-successful people
  • Successful people tend to respond to email far more often than not-so-successful people
  • Successful people tend to have far more time to volunteer than not-so-successful people
  • Successful people tend to have far more time for diverse activities than not-so-successful people
  • Successful people tend to be far more curious than not-so-successful people
  • Successful people tend to be far more inclined to meet new people than not-so-successful people
And, when I ask successful people for help they tend to help.
So, I am convinced, “successful people have more time”.
In fact, I use this as a filter…my antennae go up when people tell me they are too busy to do this or to do that. It seems to me when a person says “I am too busy” that is a signal the person may have self-management difficulties…and those self-management difficulties could lead to not-so-successful performance.
I keep my eyes and ears open for “I am too busy” when I recruit and when I train people.
I also listen and watch for “I am too busy” when we select business allies.
As I watch and listen, I think successful people have more time.


Beyond Business | I'm too busy! - I don't have time!

Comments (8) -

Rhonda Lee Canada
10/15/2010 11:19:12 PM #

I was intrigued by this entry/post in the e-zine.  Just wondering how one "gets more time" in order to become "more successful".  Its a great observation AND, if one wanted to improve in this area, what might be the necessary actions?  Just more time management?  

Or are there also a specific set of habits that successful people use to create more time?  If prioritizing, then at some point people would have to say 'no' to some things (but not the same as saying "I'm too busy"), right?

Ron Beveridge
10/16/2010 9:21:44 AM #

I found your excellent Thought Post on time, both important and accurate.  It reminded me of a time many years ago when, during my first year as an under-graduate, I was hurriedly crossing the campus of the University of Guelph in the company of one of my professors.  He mystified me.  And so, in response to my question, How is it that you can do so many different things and do them on time? - he replied, Time is elastic!  It took me a few years and considerably more life experience to fully comprehend what he had told me.

Rick Baker Canada
10/16/2010 10:55:59 PM #


"Time is elastic!" What a fascinating response. Time – what a fascinating topic.  We must discuss time the next time we meet. I am very interested in what you have learned and the conclusions you have drawn. And, I hope to share with you some of my thoughts: from Einstein to Estill, from Seneca to stress, etc.

Thank you for sharing your memorable story.

Ron Beveridge Canada
11/2/2010 4:35:45 AM #

Thanks, Rick.  I would be delighted to discuss the question of time and its elastic nature with you when we next meet.  In a way, I think that "time is elastic" derives from the same sort of thinking embodied in the great book entitled Flow.  In that book we learn that deep passion for doing what we do miraculously changes our experience of how much time has passed.  And then we have this: The more I learn, the less I know.  This famous quotation attributed to Alfred Einstein is also related to the elasticity of time and Flow, I believe.  We think that the invisible barrier of time around us is an immutable verity.  Yet the more one is driven to know, to wonder, to experience and to re-learn, the more one begins to realize that it is often conventional thinking which shackles our potential to discover that our perceived limits may in fact be an illusion.

3/2/2012 10:44:45 PM #

“It is difficult, almost impossible, for a man to be overworked if he lives a sound and pure life.”

James Allen
'Light on Life's Difficulties', (1912)

rick baker
5/4/2012 8:55:58 PM #

"The less time you feel you have to spare, the more important it is to plan your time carefully."

"Remember: There is always enough time for the important things. The busiest people are able to find time for what they want to do, not because they have any  more time than others but because they think in terms of "making" time by careful scheduling."

Alan Lakein
'How To Get Control of Your Time and Your Life', (1973)

rick baker
5/26/2012 7:55:23 PM #

“He who hoards and turns to account all odd minutes, half hours, unexpected holidays, gaps “between times”, and chasms of waiting for unpunctual persons, achieves results which astonish those who have not mastered this most valuable secret.”

Orison Swett Marden
‘Pushing to the Front’, (1911)

rick baker
10/19/2014 8:17:57 PM #

"Success is not the key to happiness. Happiness is the key to success. If you love what you are doing, you will be successful."

Albert Schweitzer
German-French Polymath (1875-1965)

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