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Time – friend or foe?

Several times over the last year, I’ve had conversations with others about finding new or different ways of making money. Invariably the limitation of time availability comes up i.e. time to learn new skills, gain new knowledge etc. Some of those people were interested in learning about investing or trading (which are different concepts) – but just can’t find the time.

Some thought they needed to go on a course or some special training – which is not true. People assume or infer things based on their own received body of knowledge and patterns of thinking. When on occasions I said, “You don’t need any courses” I would have been looked at with suspicion as if to say, ‘Are you saying I can really go out and make millions without a proper course?‘ [Which is not what I was saying.]

The idea of finding 10-15 minutes 3 to 4 times per week to learn something new, is pretty difficult for most people. As I said elsewhere, it’s not about finding time or not having it – it is about motivation. People more readily find time for things where there is easier immediacy of reward. So, the idea of slogging at something for 45 minutes per week x 5 years to gain the ability to earn £100,000 per annum tax free (but not guaranteed) is not exciting or motivating. It’s pie in the sky. By contrast the idea of a 80% probability of achieving £100K as a one off sum, is far more motivating. I’d expect more people to take up the latter option and find new time! The bottom line is that if one cannot find time to think, explore or learn new things, then one is confined to a historical body of knowledge.

In the last year, I discovered that a sizeable percentage of people did not know what Bitcoin was. Then I came across a set of people asking, “How do I buy Bitcoin?” Hmmm…so they wanted to create time to find out how to buy Bitcoin? These must be the same people who could not find time to do so many other things. But now they’re motivated. Unfortunately they were too late. The price of Bitcoin rose to >$USD 20,000/ coin. Eh? And that’s when they get interested?

In the above is a number’s game. Roughly 10-20% of people (Group A) are aware of important new phenomena, and probably only 5% are willing to take calculated controlled risks. The other 80-90% of people (Group B) are basically asleep, waken from their slumber by some big news flash, and then want to jump on board in a rush. Guess who gets richer and who gets poorer? Well it’s not hard to see that Group A will have made their profits by selling to the the large bunch of news-munching late-comers in Group B i.e. when Group B rushes in looking to buy, the minority in Group A is ready to sell. People in Group B were obviously too busy, when those in Group A were spending time being vigilant. So, Group A wins. Group B folk walk away sulking; their pockets emptied.

There were other interesting snippets of conversation, I picked up. Some would say, “It’s something I really want to learn about but I’m the sort of person that if I’m doing it, then I’m doing it properly. At the moment I couldn’t because there is so much on my plate.” You know what, some of those people have actually not had less on their plate for over 3 years. The plate is always full – amazing.

Groups of people who don’t have time:

  1. Those who genuinely don’t have time (hardly ever true).
  2. Those who assume that it’s time consuming.
  3. Those unmotivated to find time.
  4. Those who find time after the correct time has passed.

Is time really ‘your’ friend or foe? Neither.

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